The Asam Church, Magnificent is an understatement

The Asam Church

in Munich

Several years ago I stayed at the Hotel du Train in Munich. While I was strolling down the Sendlinger Strasse to have breakfast at the Marienplatz.

I saw a heavily decorated structure built adjacent to townhomes. I almost passed it, until I noticed the elaborate grand entrance.

Asam church Munich

The Asamkirche (officially St.-Johann-Nepomuk-Kirche) on Sendlinger Strasse in Munich was built between 1733 and 1746 by the Asam brothers (Cosmas Damian Asam and Egid Quirin Asam). It is considered one of the most important buildings of the two main representatives of the southern German late Baroque and on the threshold of Rococo.

The Asam brothers, Cosmas Damian Asam (1686–1739) and Egid Quirin Asam (1692–1750), were active as sculptors, plasterers, painters and architects, working on separate accounts but mostly together, mainly in southern Germany. They are known as one of the most important representatives of the German late Baroque period.

Below are the brothers Egid Quirin Asam on the left and Cosmas Damian Asam on the right (photos by Wikimedia)

The church was erected without a commission and as a private church for the higher glory of God and for the salvation of the Asam brothers. This also enabled the builder brothers to build independently without interference of clients. The church is shaped by the ideas of the Roman Baroque. While the year the foundation was laid, other Rococo style churches in Bavaria were already being built.

Below: Gnadenstuhl (mercy seat) at the choir, Confession booth (per Wikimedia)
Gilded Skeletons
Gilded Skeleton Asam church

Thanks to the artistic freedom he gained, Egid Quirin Asam was able to look directly at the high altar through a window from his private home, like a monarch. Although the church was actually planned as a private church, the brothers had to open it to the public after protests from the population. Egid Quirin Asam conceived the church as a confessional church for young people. It contains seven confessionals with allegorical representations.

Asam church altar in Munich

There are four columns on the high Altar as a reference to the four Bernini columns above the tomb of St. Peter in St. Peter in Rome
First and foremost is God the Redeemer. Below the tabernacle is a relic of St. John Nepomuk preserved
Above the high altar is a three-dimensional so-called mercy seat, on which God the Father is depicted with the triple papal tiara on his head

The choir was severely damaged during a bomb attack in 1944, and only after the interior restoration from 1975 to 1983 was a hypothetical original appearance of the choir restored after studying sources.

After taking pictures and glamouring over the structure, I sat down in solemn and let the beauty sink in. My stomach was growling, so I continued my walk down to have breakfast at the Marienplatz.