Loggia of the heroes
The loggia of the heroes, whose five arches were originally facing the sea and the underlying garden , gives access to the apartment of Andrea Doria facing west and to the one of his wife Peretta Usodimare to the east; It is the only area of the villa in which the decoration extends to the walls.
The fresco and stucco apparatus of the loggia of the heroes represents the most explicit message of dynastic glorification frequent in the villa. On the walls the twelve warriors in ancient roman vests (except one, in modern armor)can be easily identified as members of the Doria family, thanks to the family stem (a black eagle on a gold and silver background) on the shields and are specifically identified as heroes of the lineage thanks to the inscription overlooking: PRAECLARAE FAMILIAE MAGNI VIRI MAXIMI DUCES OPTIMA FECERE PRO PATRIA (“he great men of the notable family, supreme chiefs, fulfilled great deeds for the native land”).
The five vaults that cover the loggia show, in octagons surrounded by fine stuccos, the representations of classic examples of roman patriotism, famous episodes of self sacrifice for the love of the native land with starring Orazio Colcite Tito Manlio Torquato, Marco Curzio, Furio Camillo and Muzio Scevola. The parallelism between ancient and modern biographies guides the spectator towards a precise reading of the decoration: As the ancient roman heroes here represented , here the great men of the Doria family, ancestors of Andrea, are beloved saviors of the home land.
The hero’s representations are inpired to noble and up to date models.in which Michelangelo’s statues of the Dukes in the Chapels of the Medici Family in Florance, and binded one to the other by a rithmical sequence of gestures that establishes one of the most original inventions of Perin del Vaga. In the small vaults the exuberance of the stucco work is molded on the ancient examples of Neron’s Domus Aurea.