Church of San Domenico in Castelvetrano
Davide Mauro - CC4.0
The Church of San Domenico di Castelvetrano is defined the "Sistine of Sicily" as it constitutes one of the most significant examples of Sicilian Mannerism which heralds the imminent Baroque.
It was erected in 1470 at the behest of Giovan Vincenzo Tagliavia, lord of the city.
The facade is made of exposed sandstone blocks, the portal has a triangular tympanum supported by an architrave resting on pilasters with capitals Corinthians, in the center a window with a balustrade around which the signs of two previous arches no longer present are still visible.
The interior has three naves with ten side chapels. The central nave flows into the presbytery enriched with the dynamic composition of the Tree of Jesse and the Gothic arch, behind the Chapel of the Choir opens up.
The grandiose stucco artefact of the Tree of Jesse depicts the genealogical tree that starting from Jesse, father of King David, schematizes the descendants leading to the Blessed Virgin Mary, represented at the top of the tree, crowned by angels, with the child on the left knee. Jesse is shown lying with his left arm supporting the trunk of a tree on whose branches the twelve kings of the tribe of Judah are represented.
From the presbytery you enter the Choir Chapel, the main chapel , the work of the painter Antonino Ferraro da Giuliana of 1577. The dome of the chapel is rich in frescoes and religious stuccoes dating back to the sixteenth century. In the vault there are four large ovals representing the Resurrection, the Assumption, Pentecost and the Death of the Virgin, alternating with the images of Jonah, David, Solomon and Daniel, in the center, with a gesture of blessing the image of God the Father Pantocrator.
Numerous works of art kept in the church, including a white marble sarcophagus on which a knight lying with his head resting on his right arm is placed, depicting Ferdinando Tagliavia and Aragona, son of the church's client. The restoration works carried out with the most advanced technologies available have recently been completed.
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