Loyd Grossman - An Elephant In Rome

In conversation with Gerry Foley

Loyd Grossman - An Elephant In Rome





Tuesday 2 November, 2021

St Mary's Church, Petworth, GU28 0AD

7.30pm - 8.30pm

Adults £12 / 18 and under £5 / Online £5

Click here to visit Loyd Grossman's blog which also includes four video clips from An Elephant in Rome.

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We welcome one of the country’s most versatile of public figures, the polymath that is Loyd Grossman. In his new book An Elephant In Rome he takes on the subject that first kindled his love of Rome, the enigmatic monument to the relationship between the artist Gian Lorenzo Bernini and pope Alexander VII: the elephant carrying an obelisk outside Santa Maria sopra Minerva, just behind the Pantheon.

In 1655, as the new Pope, Alexander VII, fired with religious zeal, political guile and a mania for building, determined to restore the prestige of his church by making Rome the must-visit destination for Europe’s elite. To help him do so, he enlisted the talents of Bernini, already celebrated as the most important artist of the age. Together, they made one of the greatest artistic double acts in history, inventing the concept of soft power and the bucket list destination. With the elephant as his starting point, Grossman’s richly illustrated book teases out all the intertwined strands of history, power and art that make up the Baroque.

Loyd Grossman is an entrepreneur, author and broadcaster, well-known for presenting TV programmes including MasterChef, Through the Keyhole and Behind the Headlines. He has a lifelong interest in history, the arts and heritage, receiving a PhD from the University of Cambridge and serving on the board of a number of cultural institutions including English Heritage, and the Public Monuments and Sculpture Association. He is Chairman of The Royal Parks, President of The Arts Society and a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society. In June 2015 he was appointed CBE in recognition of his services to Heritage.

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