Chris Ward's picture

The Modern Bramante Staircase

The Momo staircase at the exit of the Vatican Museums is the modern equivalent of Bramante's original staircase from 1505. Built in 1932, architect Giuseppe Momo drew on the original double-helix design of a ramped staircase to allow livestock (or tourists) to move both up and down without ever intersecting. While the original staircase is off-limits to regular visitors, this staircase was definitely a suitable consolation prize!

State of Vatican City

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Sascha Pihan's picture

Great photo. How wide did you shoot it?

Chris Ward's picture

Thanks Sascha! It was shot at 16mm

Naoki Fujihara's picture


H. B.'s picture

How did you manage to capture these stairs without a bunch of people on it? I made a photo from pretty much the same viewpoint last year in February and it was (like every place in Rome, even in this season) really crowded. Great capture.

Chris Ward's picture

I took several exposures with the camera braced against the balustrade as ppl made their way down the stairs. Eventually had enough frames to mask everyone out.

Agree with you regarding the crowds. Check out the colosseum shot in my portfolio. Same idea here (although it was 150+ frames) and shot at sunset. More of an exercise in futility...but the end result is unique

H. B.'s picture

Again: Great shot! And a great example of patience ;-)

H. B.'s picture

And much easier than breaking into the vatican museums.

Chris Ward's picture

I would love to get access to that museum after hours. I enjoy the challenge of removing people, but being able to set up a tripod and take images in the peace and quiet of that museum would be incredible. Guess I need to get more famous first...lol!

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