Fermo - The Church of San Filippo

The Church of San Filippo was built  in 1594 and dedicated to the Saint about thirteen years later. The Congregation of the Oratory Fathers (now San Filippo after the death of its founder) came to Fermo in 1582 with San Filippo Neri and settled in the church of San Gregorio; later they moved to the Church of San Rocco. In 1593 the Congregation  moved to the fourteenth-century church of the Holy Spirit; one year later the Church of San Filippo was built upon the foundations of the previous one and on the basis of a plan made by Giovanni Antonio Dosio. It was opened in 1607. The unfinished façade of the church has a seventeenth-century Doric portal in Istrian stone, while the typically baroque interior is decorated with frescoes and lavish stucco. The church has Latin cross plan and a single nave flanked by six chapels. The prominent families of the area made substantial donations to the Congregation, such as sculptures and valuable paintings. The most important one is the Descent of the Holy Spirit on the Virgin and apostles, made by Giovanni Lanfranco, a seventeenth-century  painter of the Bolognese school. Two paintings in the smaller chapels depict San Lucio I and Saint Margaret made by Benedetto Gennari from Cento, who was trained in his uncles's ( Guercino) workshop. In the main altar chapel on the right is the Nativity, an early masterpiece by Peter Paul Rubens. The use of light here is very effective in creating an atmosphere full of expectations.

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