100 Swiss Franc note

Banknotes of Switzerland 100 Swiss Franc note

Banknotes of Switzerland 100 Swiss Franc note
Swiss National Bank
Schweizerische Nationalbank - Banque Nationale Suisse - Banca Nazionale Svizzera - Banca Naziunala Svizra

Switzerland Currency 100 Swiss Franc note
Obverse: Portrait of architect Francesco Borromini (1599-1667)
Reverse: Upper part of the dome-tower as well as the floor plan of the church Sant'Ivo alla Sapienza.
Colors: dark-blue, violet.
Size: 170 x 78 mm.
Watermark: portrait of Francesco Borromini.
Artists: Ernst Hiestand und Ursula Hiestand.
Printer: Orell Füssli Arts Graphiques S.A.
In circulation from 04.10.1976 to 01.05.2000.
Cancelled from 01.05.2020.

Banknotes of the Swiss franc
Switzerland Currency - 6th series of Swiss Franc banknotes

10 Swiss Franc     20 Swiss Franc     50 Swiss Franc     100 Swiss Franc    

Francesco Borromini
Francesco Borromini, byname of Francesco Castelli (25 September 1599 – 2 August 1667), was an Italian architect born in today's Ticino who, with his contemporaries Gian Lorenzo Bernini and Pietro da Cortona, was a leading figure in the emergence of Roman Baroque architecture.
   A keen student of the architecture of Michelangelo and the ruins of Antiquity, Borromini developed an inventive and distinctive, if somewhat idiosyncratic, architecture employing manipulations of Classical architectural forms, geometrical rationales in his plans and symbolic meanings in his buildings. He seems to have had a sound understanding of structures, which perhaps Bernini and Cortona, who were principally trained in other areas of the visual arts, lacked. His soft lead drawings are particularly distinctive. He appears to have been a self-taught scholar, amassing a large library by the end of his life.
   His career was constrained by his personality. Unlike Bernini who easily adopted the mantle of the charming courtier in his pursuit of important commissions, Borromini was both melancholic and quick in temper which resulted in him withdrawing from certain jobs, and his death was by suicide.
   Probably because his work was idiosyncratic, his subsequent influence was not widespread but is apparent in the Piedmontese works of Camillo-Guarino Guarini and, as a fusion with the architectural modes of Bernini and Cortona, in the late Baroque architecture of Northern Europe. Later critics of the Baroque, such as Francesco Milizia and the English architect Sir John Soane, were particularly critical of Borromini’s work. From the late nineteenth century onwards, interest has revived in the works of Borromini and his architecture has become appreciated for its inventiveness.

Francesco Borromini - Early life and first works
Francesco Borromini - Major works:
   San Carlo alle Quattro Fontane (San Carlino), built by Francesco Borromini
   Oratory of Saint Phillip Neri (Oratorio dei Filippini), built by Francesco Borromini
   Sant'Ivo alla Sapienza, built by Francesco Borromini
   Sant'Agnese in Agone, built by Francesco Borromini
   The Re Magi Chapel of the Propaganda Fide, built by Francesco Borromini
Francesco Borromini - Death and epitaph
Francesco Borromini - Honours

Francesco Borromini - Early life and first works
Borromini was born at Bissone, near Lugano in the Ticino, which was at the time a bailiwick of the Swiss Confederacy. He was the son of a stonemason and began his career as a stonemason himself. He soon went to Milan to study and practice his craft. He moved to Rome in 1619 and started working for Carlo Maderno, his distant relative, at St. Peter's and then also at the Palazzo Barberini. When Maderno died in 1629, he and Pietro da Cortona continued to work on the palace under the direction of Bernini. Once he had become established in Rome, he changed his name from Castelli to Borromini, a name deriving from his mother's family and perhaps also out of regard for St Charles Borromeo.

Francesco Borromini - Major works:

San Carlo alle Quattro Fontane (San Carlino), built by Francesco Borromini
In 1634, Borromini received his first major independent commission to design the church, cloister and monastic buildings of San Carlo alle Quattro Fontane (also known as San Carlino). Situated on the Quirinal Hill in Rome, the complex was designed for the Spanish Trinitarians, a religious order. The monastic buildings and the cloister were completed first after which construction of the church took place during the period 1638-1641 and in 1646 it was dedicated to San Carlo Borromeo. The church is considered by many to be an exemplary masterpiece of Roman Baroque architecture. San Carlino is remarkably small given its significance to Baroque architecture; it has been noted that the whole building would fit into one of the dome piers of Saint Peter's.
  The site was not an easy one; it was a corner site and the space was limited. Borromini positioned the church on the corner of two intersecting roads. Although the idea for the serpentine facade must have been conceived fairly early on, probably in the mid-1630s, it was only constructed towards the end of Borromini's life and the upper part was not completed until after the architect's death.
  Borromini devised the complex ground plan of the church from interlocking geometrical configurations, a typical Borromini device for constructing plans. The resulting effect is that the interior lower walls appear to weave in and out, partly alluding to a cross form, partly to a hexagonal form and partly to an oval form; geometrical figures that are all found explicitly in the dome above. The area of the pendentives marks the transition from the lower wall order to the oval opening of the dome. Illuminated by windows hidden from a viewer below, interlocking octagons, crosses and hexagons diminish in size as the dome rises to a lantern with the symbol of the Trinity.

Oratory of Saint Phillip Neri (Oratorio dei Filippini), built by Francesco Borromini
In the late sixteenth century, the Congregation of the Filippini (also known as the Oratorians) rebuilt the church of Santa Maria in Vallicella (known as the Chiesa Nuova -new church) in central Rome. In the 1620s, on a site adjacent to the church, the Fathers commissioned designs for their own residence and for an oratory (or oratorio in Italian) in which to hold their spiritual exercises. These exercises combined preaching and music in a form which became immensely popular and highly influential on the development of the musical oratorio.
  The architect Paolo Maruscelli drew up plans for the site (which survive) and the sacristy was begun in 1629 and was in use by 1635. After a substantial benefaction in January 1637, however, Borromini was appointed as architect. By 1640, the oratory was in use, a taller and richer clock tower was accepted, and by 1643, the relocated library was complete. The striking brick curved facade adjacent to the church entrance has an unusual pediment and does not entirely correspond to the oratory room behind it. The white oratory interior has a ribbed vault and a complex wall arrangement of engaged pilasters along with freestanding columns supporting first level balconies. The altar wall was substantially reworked at a later date.
  Borromini’s relations with the Oratorians were often fraught; there were heated arguments over the design and the selection of building materials. By 1650, the situation came to a head and in 1652 the Oratorians appointed another architect.
  However, with the help of his Oratorian friend and provost Virgilio Spada, Borromini documented his own account of the building of the oratory and the residence and an illustrated version was published in Italian in 1725.

Sant'Ivo alla Sapienza, built by Francesco Borromini
From 1640-1650, he worked on the design of the church of Sant'Ivo alla Sapienza and its courtyard, near University of Rome La Sapienza palace. It was initially the church of the Roman Archiginnasio. He had been initially recommended for the commission in 1632, by his then supervisor for the work at the Palazzo Barberini, Gian Lorenzo Bernini. The site, like many in cramped Rome, is challenged for external perspectives. It was built at the end of Giacomo della Porta's long courtyard. The dome and cochlear steeple are peculiar, and reflect the idiosyncratic architectural motifs that distinguish Borromini from contemporaries. Inside, the nave has an unusual centralized plan circled by alternating concave and convex-ending cornices, leading to a dome decorated with linear arrays of stars and putti. The geometry of the structure is a symmetric six-pointed star; from the center of the floor, the cornice looks like a two equilateral triangles forming a hexagon, but three of the points are clover-like, while the other three are concavely clipped. The innermost columns are points on a circle. The fusion of feverish and dynamic baroque excesses with a rationalistic geometry is an excellent match for a church in a papal institution of higher learning.

Sant'Agnese in Agone, built by Francesco Borromini
Borromini was one of several architects involved in the building of the church of Sant’Agnese in Agone in Rome. Not only were some of his design intentions changed by succeeding architects but the net result is a building which reflects, rather unhappily, a mix of different approaches.
  The decision to rebuild of the church was taken in 1652 as part of Pope Innocent X’s project to enhance the Piazza Navona, the urban space onto which his family palace, the Palazzo Pamphili, faced. The first plans for a Greek Cross church were drawn up by Girolamo Rainaldi and his son Carlo Rainaldi, who relocated the main entrance from the Via di Santa Maria dell'Anima to the Piazza Navona. The foundations were laid and much of the lower level walls had been constructed when the Rainaldis were dismissed due to criticisms of the design and Borromini was appointed in their stead.
  Borromini began a much more innovative approach to the facade which was expanded to include parts of the adjacent Palazzo Pamphili and gain space for his two bell towers. Construction of the façade proceeded up to the cornice level and the dome completed as far as the lantern. On the interior, he placed columns against the piers of the lower order which was mainly completed.
  In 1656, Innocent X died and the project lost momentum. In 1657, Borromini resigned and Carlo Rainaldi was recalled who made a number of significant changes to Borromini’s design. Further alterations were made by Bernini including the façade pediment. In 1668, Carlo Rainaldi returned as architect and Ciro Ferri received the commission to fresco the dome interior which it is highly unlikely that Borromini intended. Further large scale statuary and coloured marbling were also added; again, these are not part of Borromini’s design repertoire which was orientated to white stucco architectural and symbolic motifs.

The Re Magi Chapel of the Propaganda Fide, built by Francesco Borromini
The College of the Propagation of the Faith or Propaganda Fide in Rome includes the Re Magi Chapel by Borromini, generally considered by architectural historians to be one of his most spatially unified architectural interiors.
  The chapel replaced a small oval chapel designs by his rival Bernini and was a late work in Borromini’s career; he was appointed as architect in 1648 but it was not until 1660 that construction of the chapel began and although the main body of work was completed by 1665, some of the decoration was finished after his death.
  His façade to the Via di Propaganda Fide comprises seven bays articulated by giant pilasters. The central bay is a concave curve and accommodates the main entry into the college courtyard and complex, with the entrance to the chapel to the left and to the college to the right.

Francesco Borromini - Death and epitaph
In the summer of 1667, and following completion of the Falconieri chapel (the High Altar chapel) in San Giovanni dei Fiorentini, Borromini committed suicide in Rome, possibly as a result of nervous disorders and depression.

Francesco Borromini - Honours
Francesco Borromini was featured on the 6th series 100 Swiss Franc banknote, which was in circulation from 1976 until 2000.
  This decision at that time caused polemics in Switzerland, started by the Swiss Italian art historian Piero Bianconi. According to him, since in 17th century the territories which in 1803 became the Canton Ticino were Italian possessions of some Swiss cantons (Condominiums of the Twelve Cantons), Borromini could neither be defined Ticinese nor Swiss.

Sant'Ivo alla Sapienza
Sant'Ivo alla Sapienza (lit. 'Saint Yves at the Sapienza (University of Rome)') is a Roman Catholic church in Rome. Built in 1642-1660 by the architect Francesco Borromini, the church is a masterpiece of Roman Baroque architecture.
   The church is at the rear of a courtyard at 40, Corso del Rinascimento; the complex is now used by the Archives of the City of Rome.

Sant'Ivo alla Sapienza - History
Sant'Ivo alla Sapienza - Exterior
Sant'Ivo alla Sapienza - Interior

Sant'Ivo alla Sapienza - History
   In the 14th century, there was a chapel here for the palace of the University of Rome. The University is called La Sapienza, and the church was dedicated to Saint Yves (patron saint of jurists). When a design was commissioned from Borromini, he adapted to the already existing palazzo. He choose a plan resembling a star of David - which would have been recognized at the time as a Star of Solomon, symbolizing wisdom - and merged a curved facade of the church with the courtyard of the palace. The corkscrew lantern of the dome was novel. The complex rhythms of the interior have a dazzling geometry to them. It is a rational architecture- intricate to view, but on paper the overlap of a circle on two superimposed equilateral triangles creates a basis for a hexagonal array of chapels and altar in a centralized church. The undulations, both concave and convex of the interiors, create a jarring yet stunning appeal. The decoration is a mixture of novel organic (six-winged cherubic heads) and geometric (stars). Rising along the base of three of the dome's pillars are the symbol of the Chigi family, the "six mountain beneath a star".
   The main artwork of the interior is the altarpiece by Pietro da Cortona, portraying St. Yves.

Sant'Ivo alla Sapienza - Exterior
The church rises at the end of a courtyard, known as the courtyard of Giacomo della Porta. The façade is concave, molding the church into the courtyard as if completing it rather than disrupting it. The façade itself looks like a continuation of the courtyard arches except with the openings filled in with small windows, a door, and a larger glass window above the door. Above the façade is a large parapet structure so that only the higher stages of the church is seen past the façade. A key exterior aspect is the top of the church: the lantern of Sant'Ivo is topped with a spiral shape, surmounted by a Cross.

Sant'Ivo alla Sapienza - Interior
The interior of Sant'Ivo is unique because of the shapes incorporated into the rotunda. Borromini was well known for fusing of geometrical shapes as well as his pairing of columns in order to facilitate curves, incorporating them in an harmonious manner in his project at San Carlino. But for Sant'Ivo, Borromini did not blend the different shapes. The rotunda of Sant'Ivo is contrived of distinct shapes, a triangle with its three angles cut as if bitten off, and semi-circles located in between the triangle’s three lines. Despite the shift from the smooth geometrical alignments of San Carlino to the sharper abrupt geometrical bends in Sant'Ivo, both buildings exhibit harmony between the sharp edges and the curves and spheres. Borromini utilized curves (semi-circles) and edges (clipped triangle tips) in equal amounts to define the shape of the rotunda. This blending of edges and curves is arguably Borromini’s most distinguishable signature.
  Another detail is that windows associated with the round sections of the dome are larger than those associated with the edges. One of the edgy sections is where the entrance is located while the altar is located on the opposite end, a round section. The two other round and edgy sections to the sides are identical in features . Through the perforations in the lantern, sunlight illuminates the dome through an oculi. Francesco Borromini had a talisman with the shape of a flying bee installed in the roof of the lantern as this is a symbol of the family of Urban VIII Barberini who patronized the construction of Sant'Ivo.
  The aisles of arches surrounding the right and left wings of the bird or of Sant'Ivo are themselves not halted by the church. Here, the space between the arches and the walls in the aisles still continues past the church’s sides. Each aisle has a single lateral entrance to the church. These hindered side entrances lead to hexagonal rooms(one on each side), and these hexagonal rooms are connected to the rotunda as well as the smaller façade windows. Behind the Altar to the rear of the church lies two more hexagonal rooms with windows aligned on the back. To the rear wings of the altar are the passages leading to the two separate hexagonal rear rooms.
  The inside walls and dome of the rotunda were covered by Borromini with sculptures and motifs. On each edgy and round section there are columns of stars leading up to an angel’s face with wings. One close observable difference between the round segments and the edgy ones is that the round ones exhibit a motif of six eggs in a pyramid formation with three crowns holding them together while the edgy segments exhibit a bouquet of flowers held together by a single crown.