Salvatore Olandese. Pierre Cuypers’ Archeologische Commissie en de kunsttheoretische betekenis van de catacombenkopieën in Valkenburg
- Journal Article
Between 1910 and 1912, copies of some sixty burial chambers of the catacombs of Rome were reconstructed on the Valkenburg estate of the client, Jan Diepen. To ensure the integrity of the project, an 'Archeological Advisory Committee' was assembled under the chairmanship of the architect P.J.H. (Pierre) Cuypers. In response to a historiographical critique by the liturgical scholar Paul Post, this article demonstrates that among the members of the client's entourage the Valkenburg catacomb reproductions were associated not only with devotional or liturgical matters but also with art-theoretical issues. In 1916 the members of the group of advisers chaired by Cuypers published a Festschrift to celebrate the fifth anniversary of the catacomb complex. The first sections of this article discuss and analyse the contents and structure of that publication. It is clear from the Festschrift that both the devotional and the art-theoretical significance of Christian archaeology were acknowledged. In the Festschrift contributions, the symbolic heart of the undertaking, the Salvatore Olandese fresco discovered by Diepen, is not only dealt with as a devotional object, but is also described as an art-historical transitional fresco. The devotional and art-theoretical intent resonated even more clearly in the articles about the complex that appeared in the Dutch press. The reports in the De Tijd newspaper of the opening of the first wing and of an episcopal visitation, confirm that not only the religious but also the artistic ideas associated with the reproductions in the Festschrift, were actually experienced and communicated in the catacomb complex. Finally, the manuscript of the 1917 eulogy dedicated to Cuypers in the name of Diepen's advisers, reveals that the latter were also cognizant of what the project might mean for Cuypers' oeuvre. While the Salvatore Olandese connected the Valkenburg reproductions with their Roman models, the manuscript shows that the members of Diepen's entourage also hoped that their catacombs would connect Rome with Cuypers' neo-Gothic architecture. Show more
Journal / seriesBulletin KNOB
Pages / Article No.
PublisherKoninklijke Nederlandse Oudheidkundige Bond
Organisational unit02100 - Dep. Architektur / Dep. of Architecture
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