The beating heart of the liturgical life that daily brings praise to God, the presbyteral area is really a door to heaven and, precisely through prayer, opens a dialogue with the Eternal Father, whose voice seems to respond, reassuring and powerful, in the notes of the great organ that accompanies the sacred celebrations.
The ancient inlaid choir turns its gaze to the Pantocrator and almost encloses and preserves, through the centuries, the invocations that the people of God have always raised to its Lord. From each choir stall, surprising in its particular beauty, the supplication to the Supreme God does not cease to implore help and protection.
From the Chair, the succession of Bishops, with their magisterium, shows the solidity and continuity in the transmission of the Faith since the Apostolic Church, from which the Christian message took shape and continues to travel the roads of history and to reach the heart of every man in time and space.
The presence of our Lord, which is renewed daily in the celebration of each Eucharist, ensures that this wonderful Temple can really be said to consist of living stones and show its true soul: that of an ardent and profound faith. It is thus that during the celebration of the Eucharistic Sacrifice, while the ones gaze lingers to contemplate the beauties of which the Cathedral is a precious treasure chest, the eyes of the soul extend to see beyond and to lead the motions of the heart towards the One from whom everything comes and to whom everything returns.
The works of the Apse
- Delivery of the keys to Peter
- Apparition of the angels after the Ascension
- Meeting between Jesus and the centurion Cornelius
- PantocratorPantocrator among the Saints Marcellinus, Himerius, Homobonus, Peter the Exorcist - Apsidal basin
- Assumption of the VirginBernardino Gatti, deceased before finishing the work. It was completed in 1579 by Giovanni Battista Trotti, aka il Malosso
- Entrance of Jesus in Jerusalem
- Incredulity of St. Thomas
- Sinite parvulos
A masterpiece that marks the entry of the Renaissance in the Cathedral is the choir inlaid by Giovanni Maria da Platina (Piadena) between 1483 and 1489. A work of exceptional caliber that we no longer admire in its original location but leaning against the apse wall after a work done in 1540 and which indubitably presents points of reflection of a stylistic nature, but also on the different variants of the diffusion of perspective works in Valpadana and on the fervor that animates wood art in Cremona, city of woodworkers inlaid wood and sculptors of great value: let us recall the Sacca and the De Marchi families, authors of other important works found in cities such as Ferrara, Pavia, around the Certosa (Carthusian monastery) and also Vercelli (Sant’Andrea) and Bologna (San Giovanni in Monte).
Canonical choir (Giovanni Maria Platina – 1483/1489)
Crowned with a typically Renaissance cymatium, the choir is structured in two levels: an upper and a lower one. Streamlined in a verticality emphasized by the long mirrors of the inlays, the upper level reveals a clever architectural arrangement of the seats harmoniously placed in a sort of dialogue from one side to the other thanks to their dimensions and the chromatic effects due to the alternation of light and dark backgrounds. The individual units of the stalls, linked by the mighty architrave above, are indicated by the succession of important carvings of foliage and fruits that mark the succession of the stalls.
The variety of subjects in these inlays is truly incredible, showing the pictorial strength of the wood and ranging from perspective views – the famous portrait of Piazza Duomo at the end of the fifteenth century, for example – to the sacred depictions: an announcement at the center of the hemicycle shows the paintings of the Angel and the Virgin in two stalls. Here we also find the patron saints Homobonus and Himerius who occupy the first stalls on the right and on the left, as well as various scenes that alternate naturalistic subjects, mirrors with animals, furnishings and the most varied objects including not to be forgotten musical instruments.
The lower level of the stalls, more massive and square in shape, serves as a solid base for the higher level and presents extraordinary geometric decor that reveals, even in this ornamental genre, great mastery in a careful and scrupulous design that completes the liveliness of the higher stalls.