Gian Lorenzo Bernini

The man who created many of the top attractions in Rome

Gian Lorenzo Bernini was one of Italy’s most beloved and prolific artists.

Some of Bernini’s best-known works include the jaw-dropping collonade in front of St. Peter’s Basilica, the Fountain of the Four Rivers in Piazza Navona, the immense baldachin over the high altar of St. Peter’s Basilica, and the Ecstasy of Saint Teresa, among hundreds of other works of art scattered around Rome, Florence, and beyond.

A sculptor, painter, and architect, Bernini was one of Rome’s last true Renaissance men, though his work properly belongs to the Baroque period, which came just after the Renaissance and marked the abandonment of reason and rationality in favor of emotion, movement, drama, and occasionally excess.