The façade of Santa Maria dei Derelitti, or the church of the Ospedaletto, stands as one of the most eccentric works ever executed by the prominent Venetian architect Baldassare Longhena.1 Longhena worked on the project, located near the major Dominican church of Santi Giovanni e Paolo in Venice, from 1670 to 1674 in collaboration with the sculptors Giusto Le Court and Marco Beltrame and the stonecutter Giacomo da Par. The composition of the façade is conspicuously incongruous, with its minor order of grotesque herms supporting a gigantic order of atlantes and pilgrim-telamones above, both recalling and also subverting the canonical rules and hierarchies of classical architecture (...

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