56, Milan, Santa Maria delle Grazie, studies of west door
Inscribed ‘DOORWAY/S. MARIA DEL[sic] GRAZIE/MILAN’ and other notes in pencil, 230x160mm.
Santa Maria delle Grazie, Corso Magenta, is a brick church originally designed by the Milanese architect Guiniforte Solari (1429-81). Solari’s Gothic church of 1466-90 was modified from 1492 when a Renaissance domed crossing and the marble west porch were added. These have been attributed to Donato Bramante (1444-1514). Mackintosh singled out the ‘very good renaissance porch’ for praise but wrote disparagingly that ‘the renaissance work on the exterior of the dome & trancepts [sic] is to speak mildly comical’ (‘Diary’, 28 June).
The drawing contains: perspective of porch (left); profile of entablature and capital with details of scultured bands on columns (right); moulding of base of column (bottom right).
It has been suggested that Mackintosh may have used the porch as a model for his arched entrance hall to the Glasgow Art Club (1892-3) (see p. 90) (Roger Billcliffe, ‘Charles Rennie Mackintosh: the complete furniture, furniture drawings & interior designs’ (London: Lutterworth Press, 1979), pp.28-9). A similar porch also appears in an early design for the Glasgow Herald Building (see p. 94).