23. Lomellini Stefano - Palazzo Doria Lamba
via Cairoli, 18



Aree tematiche

Incluso negli elenchi dei Rolli a partire dal 1588, il palazzo attuale è frutto di un ampliamento settecentesco opera dell’architetto ticinese Gregorio Petondi a partire dal 1775 per la committenza di Gian Tommaso Balbi, per concludersi nel 1788.
Passato in proprietà ai Lomellini e, infine, ai Doria Lamba che lo detengo ancora oggi, l’edificio è frutto di un lungo percorso progettuale che si modifica di pari passo con l’evolversi delle operazioni per l’apertura di Strada Nuovissima, oggi via Cairoli, avvenuta tra il 1778 e il 1786 ad opera dello stesso Petondi. Diretta conseguenza dell’esigenza di rapportarsi a due percorrenze di pari gerarchia quali la costruenda strada e la parallela via Lomellini, il palazzo presenta una soluzione architettonica particolarmente interessante che mette in comunicazione i due differenti e contrapposti ingressi, dando vita ad un sistema di cortili e atri organizzati intorno allo scenografico monumentale in marmo che media il notevole dislivello di quota esistente tra le due percorrenze, fin da subito molto ammirato da visitatori stranieri e studiosi di architettura tra cui Cesare Brandi e Rudolph Wittkower.
Recenti acquisizioni documentarie hanno permesso di conoscere l’evoluzione progettuale del complesso edilizio, che avviene su preesistenze di origine medievale e su antichi tracciati viabilistici, poi inglobati in un unico corpo edilizio, riorganizzato nei suoi spazi interni secondo la ‘moderna’ disposizione francese, con camere, recamere, salotti e gallerie en enfilade che consentono di percorrere gli ambienti dell’appartamento secondo un percorso ad anello. Ambienti che, ancora secondo l’ormai diffuso gusto rocaille, furono aggiornati da decorazioni in stucco – opera dei ticinesi Cantoni, particolarmente attivi per le committenze genovesi settecentesche – entro cui vennero inseriti dipinti su tela, tra i quali il ciclo delle Allegorie di Sebastiano Conca di cui resta una sola tela, posta a soffitto, raffigurante la Liguria.
Nell’appartamento al piano nobile, che oggi ospita il Circolo dei Nobili, è presente una piccola cappella per la quale era originariamente stata prevista la statua dello scultore francese Pierre Puget dedicata all’Immacolata poi donata al vicino oratorio di San Filippo Neri e oggi sostituita – nella sua collocazione originaria – da una buona interpretazione del medesimo tema, opera di Francesco Maria Schiaffino.
 
Bibliografia aggiornata post 1998
G. Ciotta (a cura di), Genova Strada Nuovissima : impianto urbano e architetture, Genova 2005
Catalogo mostra Poleggi 2004.
E. Poleggi (a cura di), L’invenzione dei Rolli. Genovà civiltà di palazzi, catalogo della mostra (Genova, Palazzo Tursi, 28 maggio – 7 settembre 2004), Milano 2004.
E. Poleggi, Genova. Una civiltà di Palazzi, Cinisello Balsamo (Milano) 2002, pp. 171-173 (Palazzo di Gio. Tommaso Balbi (1775-1778))
C. Altavista, Petondi, Giovanni Angelo Gregorio, ad vocem, in Dizionario Biografico degli italiani, vol. 82/2015.


 

The origin of the building, in the configuration in which it currently stands and which was restored on the occasion of Genoa 2004, can be traced back to the opening of “Via Nuovissima”, nowadays via Cairoli, which had received strong support from the Fathers of the City Council.

Indeed, as far back as 1661, Pietro Antonio Corradi was commissioned to present the “Model for a New road to be built between Guastato and “Strada Nuova”. However, it was not until 1777 that a competition was launched for the construction of “Strada Nuovissima”, a natural link between “Strada Nuova” and piazza del Guastato, despite the opposition raised by the Balbi and Brignole families and the church of San Siro dei Padri Teatini.
Four submissions were selected, those of Claudio Storace, Andrea Tagliafichi, Gianbattista Pellegrini and Gregorio Pettondi, and the latter was successful. This may also have been due to the political influence of Giuseppe Lomellini, who was Doge of Genoa at the time, and whose family owned the property. Petondi was then appointed by the Balbi family, who in the meantime had taken over the property from the Lomellini family, to carry out the refurnishment of the lot, in view of the opening of the new road.
At that time the lot consisted of two buildings overlooking “Strada Lomellina” (nowadays Via Lomellini) separated by an alley known as vico Molini, and bounded by vico dell’Argento, which still exists today, and salita de’ Forni, which subsequently became piazza della Zecca.
Pettondi’s design was very faithful to the old layout, amalgamating the two buildings using a system of courtyards and atriums overlooked by a monumental marble staircase, an ideal solution for linking the new entrance on “Via Nuovissima” with the state apartments. Although this solution partly followed the original road layout, replacing the vico dei Molini, it also emphasised the hierarchisation of the frontages by creating the atrium and monumental doorway on “Via Nuovissima”.
The design implemented by Gregorio Pettondi is a design that blends in with the pre-existing structures, with a view to restoring them in spectacular style. It is the combined system of atriums, courtyards, stairs and staircase that represents a highly effective attempt to reconnect the old entrance with the new, on the opposite side, despite all the impediments such as differences in level, elevation restrictions, narrowness of the lots and the fact that virtually the only light source is from above.
It is no coincidence that the palazzo staircase is the only Genoese example illustrated in Disegno dell’architettura italiana by Cesare Brandi. Although, on the one hand, one could say that this does not seem to be a faithful representation of XVIII Century Genoese architecture, which is definitely largely Baroque, one cannot ignore the fact that this nascent Neo-Classicism does not appear to be particularly dogmatic and, indeed, seems very well-disposed to restoring its links with tradition, albeit with some allowance for changing conditions and intentions.
The design of the façade on via Cairoli is organised into three sections, the two upper areas to the side containing the salons and a central part that marks the unoccupied space, containing the atrium and staircase.
For the redesign of the façade on via Lomellini, Pettondi decided to keep the layout unchanged, really enhancing its position on vicolo dei Molini by means of a marble arch. This decision is illustrated in the note to the design of the elevation “this is the most uniform of the old parts and least consequential to carry out”.
The works started in 1775 and concluded in 1788; they were actually carried out by Gregorio Pettondi, who acted as “works manager” with the assistance of brothers Domenico, who was a mason, and Giobatta, a stucco decorator. It is known that the decoration of the façade was carried out by a certain Gaetano Carbone who worked on it from May 1781 to March 1784.
The interiors were redecorated at the same time, making full use of the favourite stucco decorations, often including paintings on canvas, such as the famous cycle of the Allegories by Sebastiano Conca, of which only the ceiling panel remains, depicting Ligurian Artists documented as being used for the statuesque decorations include the Cantoni from Ticino.
During this period Gaetano, one of the members of this family, designed and directed the works for rebuilding the “Saloni del Maggiore e del Minor Consiglio” in Palazzo Ducale, one of the most important Italian sites of the end of the Eighteenth Century.
 
 


I testi sono stati aggiornati grazie al progetto INSIDE STORIES finanziato a valere sui fondi – Legge 20 febbraio 2006, n. 77 “Misure speciali di tutela e fruizione dei siti italiani di interesse culturale, paesaggistico e ambientale, inseriti nella “lista del patrimonio mondiale”, posti sotto la tutela dell’UNESCO