October 9, 2019 /

Museum – The relics of the saint

The Relics Chapel of the Lower Basilica of Saint Francis in Assisi.

We present the intervention of realization of the Exposition, through the words of the Interview with the Architect Mauro Amurri, head of the Design area of DACA Vetrina D’Autore.

“The intervention of Assisi stems from a relationship now consolidated over the years with the General Custody of the Sacred Convent of Assisi.

The intervention that took place in the Lower Basilica involves DACA together with the Studio di Architettura Salvatici – Ripa Di Meana, which took care of the study of the new Chapel of Relics housed inside the Chapel of St. Nicholas in the Lower Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi.


Setting up of the new Chapel of the Relics – Lower Basilica of Assisi (photo caption)

“The conservation requirements that we shared were to seal with a constant control of the temperature and relative humidity inside the display case. In addition, a lighting system that guarantees a “dimmable” light source and therefore a control of the quantity of light to which the objects are subjected.

In the particular case of the Saio, the need was also to have a display case with the glass easily liftable, to intervene from time to time on the Saio with conservation procedures.

The periodic interventions necessary for the conservation of the Saio can in fact be more frequently the simple dusting or, with longer intervals, a real repositioning of the Saio, in the case, to change the parts in support and vary the air flows in the fabric.

For the Teca containing La Cartula, the project provided for the constant monitoring of the relative humidity inside the display case, this in addition to the hermetic container containing the parchment, in order to create in the display case an additional casing with stable and monitored microclimate, this as a further element of conservation for the find that we remember presents one of the few autograph writings of the Saint.


The architects of Studio Salvatici – Ripa di Meana were generally in charge of the installation; in particular they decided on the arrangement of the windows in the Chapel and together with us at DACA they decided on the aesthetic characteristics to be maintained and defined the colours of the windows.

The design of the windows has therefore a shared paternity between the Design Office of DACA and the Salvatici – Ripa di Meana Architectural Office.


On the left, the tunic of St. Francis and on the right, the Franciscan “Rule”. (photo caption)


“To define the concept: the creative heart of this project, probably the most appropriate term is: Respect.The operation had to be, in fact, respectful, especially of the contents, so that the windows could be as “invisible” as possible to harmonize as much as possible with the colours and lights of the chapel in which they were installed.Also for this reason, a fundamental part of the work was the definition of the colours, the varnishes and the fabrics.

A fundamental part of the work was therefore the definition of colours, paints and fabrics.

In order to avoid choices that were not their own, various tests were initially carried out, from simple “colour tiles” to real three-dimensional models to be placed inside the Chapel.

So a first functional prototype was installed directly on site and we can reveal that fortunately the fact of seeing the window in real size in its place allowed us to find an aesthetic error that was then avoided in the realization.

In fact, the first prototype was made by choosing white as the general colour, but once installed, we realized that this tone was too dissonant with respect to the context, so we opted for a tone always clear, but according to shared evaluations corresponding better to the colours and lights of the environment in which they were installed.


Il Saio di San Francesco esposto nella forma del TAU.


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