This object is currently on display in room 212 as part of Models & Prototypes Gallery: Thaw Models. There are 2 other images of this object. This object has no known copyright, and as such we offer a high-resolution image of it. See our image rights statement.

 

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Object Timeline

2012

2013

  • We acquired this object.

2014

2017

  • You found it!

Baptistry or Church Architectural Model, 1782

This is a architectural model. It is dated 1782 and we acquired it in 2013. Its medium is carved and turned ivory and ivory veneer, gilt metal, wood. It is a part of the Product Design and Decorative Arts department.

This extraordinary model of a temple is close to many late Renaissance examples. The proportions are those of the late 16th century. The model was executed, however, in 1782, probably in Venice. It is dedicated to Pope Pius VI as a special commission. The very sophisticated carved and veneered ivory on wood demonstrates excellent skill. The structure carries its hexagonal shape from the base up to the gallery and on to the drum that supports the dome, which has oculi windows. Made by a great model maker who was possibly also an architect, this model sums up many treatises on architectural refinement of the Renaissance in its execution, shape and design.
This model is one of a group of models proposed for acquisition. Models are an important part of the design process, and demonstrate craftsmanship, skill of execution, and the innovative use of materials. The group under consideration would provide the museum with an opportunity to examine the role of the model in many contexts.

This object was featured in our Object of the Day series in a post titled A Model fit for a Pope.

This object was donated by Eugene V. Thaw and Clare E. Thaw. It is credited Gift of Eugene V. and Clare E. Thaw.

Our curators have highlighted 10 objects that are related to this one. Here are three of them, selected at random:

Its dimensions are

H x diam. 68.6 x 43.2 cm (27 x 17 in)

It is inscribed

Latin inscription including dedication to Pope Pius VI, and the date "MDCCLXXXII A.P.R.M." "HOC OPUS A DRO JHO BAPTA RASIO CAPIIZS ASGE RIS SACERO IMPROBO- TRIENI EXACTI[…] ABORE PIOVI PONT MAX E GERMANIA REDUCI DUM ANGUILARIÆ PER GIAMB TRANS ATHESIUM VEHERI[…] FUIT OBLATUM TANTAQ SS PATRIS ANIMUM ADMARE PERCULIT UT IPSUM TER BENEDICENS AUCTOREM SUUM QUOQ SPIRITUALIBUS CUMUCARAIT DONIS XIII KAL.JUL.A.B.G.N.M.D.CC.IXXXII."

Cite this object as

Baptistry or Church Architectural Model, 1782; Italy; carved and turned ivory and ivory veneer, gilt metal, wood; H x diam. 68.6 x 43.2 cm (27 x 17 in); Gift of Eugene V. and Clare E. Thaw; 2013-3-2

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If you would like to cite this object in a Wikipedia article please use the following template:

<ref name=CH>{{cite web |url=https://collection.cooperhewitt.org/objects/35460287/ |title=Baptistry or Church Architectural Model, 1782 |author=Cooper Hewitt, Smithsonian Design Museum |accessdate=17 October 2017 |publisher=Smithsonian Institution}}</ref>

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