Piazza Navona boasts a church by Boromini and a fountain by Bernini. (click to enlarge)
Piazza Navona was built on the remains of an ancient Roman Arena and boasts not one but three fountains.
The Chiesa di Sant'Agnese Agone was designed by Boromini and is asymmetrical. The ornate fountain in the middle of the piazza is the Fontana dei Quattro Fumeri, or the Fountain of the Four Rivers. The fountain was designed by Bernini, an archrival of Boromini. One of the figures on the fountain is shielding his eyes from the sight of the church-- Bernini is literally telling off Boromini for all eternity.
(detail) The piazza is bordered by cafes.
The asymmetrical Chiesa di Sant'Agnese Agone (click to enlarge)
The piazza was lively and had surprisingly few tourists. I spent the afternoon sitting on a bench being serenaded by street musicians and drawing. An old couple sat next to me for a while doing their crossword puzzles, and I got a cluck of approval as they were leaving.
sketchbook spreads copyright Kate Castelli 2011