Canaletto, Tiepolo and the artists of 18th century Venice

A rich exhibition of 18thcentury Venetian art will bring you closer to the light and gentle spirit of the Rococo.

Masterpieces by great artists like Canaletto and Tiepolo dominates in the former apartment of the Doge; you can admire the bright pastel palette of Tiepolo and the cityscapes full of air and light of Canaletto. You can indulge in details that show daily life in the 18thcentury in the vedute and be captivated by the sensuousness of the figures in mythological stories. 

I suggest you look at the visionary power of the works of Giambattista Piazzetta, an artist that modeled his figures with a very strong chiaroscuro and gave them enigmatic attitudes.

Venice in the 18thcentury was still a rich capital; its inhabitants were used to luxury and elegance and all those who could afford artworks kept commissioning paintings for their private homes as well as a donation for churches and confraternities. As a result, the artistic practice was very widespread. Even the minor artist had such mastery that their works are of high quality.

If you are in Venice, don’t miss the exhibition held in the Doge’s Palace. Until June 9th, 2019.

Text auf deutsch

Eine reiche Ausstellung über das leichte “spirit” des 18. Jahrhunderts im Dogenpalast bis Juni 2019.
Venedig war im 18. Jahrhundert noch eine reiche Hauptstadt; Die Bewohner waren an Luxus und Eleganz gewöhnt, und alle, die sich Kunstwerke leisten konnten, gaben weiterhin Gemälde für ihre Privathäuser in Auftrag und machten Spenden für Kirchen und Bruderschaften . Infolgedessen war die künstlerische Praxis sehr verbreitet. Sogar der kleine Künstler hatte eine solche Meisterschaft, dass ihre Werke von hoher Qualität sind.


Ketzerisches Venedig

Ketzerisches Venedig. Zwischen Reformation und Inquisition. München, 2018, Claudius V.

Venedig war die größte Stadt über die Alpen, wo man über die neuen Ideen von Luther diskutieren konnte. Die Regierung war zwar katholisch aber in der reichen Hauptstadt war eine gewisse Toleranz üblich

Die Venezianer waren eine gebildete Gesellschaft, die Interesse hatte, für alles was Neues war. In Venedig wohnten Orthodoxen, Armenier, Juden und manche Moslimen: Menschen aus verschiedener Herkunft, Sprache, mit anderen Gewohnheiten, anderen Esskulturen. Handelsbeziehungen und Nachbarschaft brachten die viele Gemeinschaften nah.

Die Präsenz einer zahlreichen deutschsprachigen Gemeinschaft, die Druckindustrie, die Stärke der neuen Doktrin und einer gewissen Freiheit der Diskussionen zogen viele Denker in die Stadt. Manche nannte sie “das neue Genf”. Mitte des 16. Jahrhunderts wurde die Regierung das Inquisitionsgericht wieder im Gang stellen und solchen freien Debatten ein Ende setzen.

Dieses Führer stellt jene Orte vor, wo Künstler, Handwerkern, Patrizier, Intellektuellen oder das einfache Volk heftig die neue lutherische Botschaft diskutierten. Es erinnert an die ersten mutigen Schritte zur Freiheit des Denkens.

Text: Cristina Gregorin; Fotos: Norbert Heyl

Claudius Verlag, 2018

Aus dem Venedigplan von Jacopo de’ Barbari. Außerordentliche detailtreue Wiedergabe von Venedig im Jahr 1500
Die Arkaden in Rialto, wo vor allem Goldschmiede und Juweliere über Luthers Doktrin diskutierten

Venice survival kit

I’m happy to share a very useful set of information and tips for our many visitors! The handbook has been elaborated by my friends of the Gruppo 25 aprile: “a group of venetians, “native” and not (venetians by choice, in all cases) (…) now risk being forced out of our environment (…) because of the cost of living and the lack of appropriate job opportunities.”
As we Venetians are pleased to have you as visitor in our magnificent city, full of art treasures and with a long and extraordinary history, we’d love to prevent you from being cheated.
These information have been conceived especially for the time of Carnival but they are useful all year round.
One more tip from me before you go ahead with reading this very well done handbook: The best and reliable guidebook about eating in Venice is by Michela Scibilia “Venezia, osterie e dintorni” that you can download also in english as an app: Tap Venice Eating.
Needless to say we’d also help each other, residents and visitors… we’d warmly appreciate if you don’t stop on the bridges blocking the people behind you 🙂
Welcome to Venice! A city to enjoy and respect.

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Santa Maria dei Miracoli: a Jewel Box


Santa Maria dei Miracoli. Foto credit:

Deutscher Text am Ende.

Ezra Pound called it a ‘jewel box’; today it is one of the most popular churches to celebrate a wedding. The Miracoli church is intimate and at the same time spectacular hidden shrine of Venice.

Dedicated to the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary, but called by everyone Our Lady of the Miracles because of a miraculous image of the Virgin Mary standing above the main altar, this late 15th- century church is a symbol of the Venice of that time: rich, with a sophisticated sense of beauty, proud to carry on the classical legacy of the antique world, and proud of its very miracle: to stand on the water, like the church itself.

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The Treasures of the Doge – A new Itinerary in the Doge’s Palace


The Doge’s Palace of Venice is a shrine with lavishing gilt ceilings, great masterpieces by Veronese and Tiepolo, and hundreds of years of history visible on its many paintings but now there is a new reason to visit it.

Doge's Palace

Giant’s Staircase

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The Jews of Venice and the Ghetto

18th century banker; possibly Jewish banks must have looked just the same.

18th-century banker; Jewish banks must have looked just the same.

In the 17th and 18th century the Jews of Venice were a flourishing community.
Officially, they could work only as moneylenders, have pawn-shops or deal with second-hand clothes and furnishing, but then of which quality! Sir Wotton, an English nobleman who lived in Venice, bought furniture, fabrics, carpets, chandeliers, and other various objects in the Jewish Ghetto. Even most of the decorations for the golden boat of the Doge, the Bucintoro, came from the Jewish shops.

Grevembroch Jewish Peddler

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An architectural Walk: the Giudecca Island in Venice

Cino Zucchi, new construction on the Giudecca island, 1996-2003

Deutsche Version am Ende

People often think that Venice is a city where history has stopped with the fall of the Republic; a city that has not been touched by modernity .

On the contrary throughout the 19th and 20th century, there have been intensive discussions on new urban plans that would help to develop the economy; thousands of buildings were pulled down and reconstructed in new forms.

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Last tips for your Christmas in Venice


Francesco Ardini Photo credit: Ohmyblue

For those who are in Venice over Christmas, here you have a few last minute shopping tips (but they will be good also if you plan to come later in the season)

Design objects, bags, fashion jewelry and fashion… here my favorite shops

Gualti between campo San Barnaba and campo Santa Margherita in Rio Terà Canal.


Photo credit: Gualti

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The Church of the Jesuits in Venice


Deutsche Zusammenfassung am Ende

On the northern side of Venice, in the Cannaregio district, you can find the Jesuits Church, which is richly ornate, and austere at the same time.

The order of the Jesuits was founded in 1534 by Ignatius of Loyola. The Spanish Saint had a military background and conceived the order as a well-organized structure open to men who wanted to “serve as soldiers of God”. Their aim was “the defense and propagation of the faith”.

Their sacral buildings are usually very imposing, with overwhelming decorations, aiming to show the power of the Catholic Church.

Jesuits, interior

In Venice the Jesuits wanted to show their connections with the Venetian government as well as with the Vatican. The construction was commissioned to the best architect (Domenico Rossi) and artists (Louis Dorigny, Giuseppe Torretti) of that time.

Gesuiti church, detail of angel

The interior is covered by an extraordinary variety of marbles, part of them are carved and inlaid (like the one by the altar that looks like a carpet). Black and white marble inlaid on the columns looks like fabric.
The altar has a baldacchino with barley-twist columns and concealed lighting.

Gesuiti church, main altar

The ceiling is covered with gilded plasterwork and frescoes.

Gesuiti church, ceiling

Among the artworks in the Gesuiti church there is an Assumption of the Virgin Mary by Tintoretto and an extraordinary Martyrdom of St. Lawrence by Titian. The painting (1548-57), made in a late phase of Titian’s life, when the artist couldn’t see very well and used his hands to put colors on the canvas, is one of the most astonishing night scene, of European Renaissance Art.

Titian, Martyrdom of St. Lawrence, 1548-57

The Gesuiti Church is not as famous as the Frari or San Zaccaria but it is one of those many hidden ‘jewels’ that make Venice so special at every step.

Text auf deutsch
Auf der Nordseite von Venedig, im Stadtteil Cannaregio, befindet sich die reich verzierte und gleichzeitig strenge Jesuitenkirche.
Der Orden der Jesuiten wurde 1534 von Ignatius von Loyola gegründet. Der spanische Heilige hatte einen militärischen Hintergrund und konzipierte den Orden als eine gut organisierte Struktur, die Männern offen stand, die “als Soldaten Gottes dienen” wollten.
Ihre sakralen Gebäude sind normalerweise sehr imposant, mit überwältigenden Verzierungen, um die Macht der katholischen Kirche zu demonstrieren.