Wonderful Palazzo Barbaro



The Gothic Palace on the Grand Canal was bought in the 19th century by the American Daniel Sargent Curtis, who lovingly preserved and maintained the palace as much as possible to its original form. Daniel and Ariana Curtis hosted many intellectuals and artists, among them John Singer Sargent, who was a relative of Daniel, James Abbott Whistler, Claude Monet, Henry James (who wrote part of his Aspern Papers here) and Isabella Stewart Gardner, who fell in love with Venice and when she went back to Boston, she built her “Venetian Palazzo”, an interpretation of the Renaissance palaces of Venice.

Palazzo Barbaro is a private palace, not owned by the Curtis family any longer, and it might be open in the future for public visits (fees to be inquired!). Enjoy this glimpses of its interiors to imagine the past wealth of Venetian families.

Anyway there are more Venetian Palaces that you might enjoy to see, like Ca’ Rezzonico, Ca’ Mocenigo or the Querini Stampalia. The interiors, furniture, plaster work, chandeliers, paintings, are usually in late 18th century style.


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The Sala dell’Albergo restored: thanks to Save Venice

Accademia Sala albergo

Save Venice, the American Committee that supports the artistic heritage of Venice by sponsoring the preservation of countless works of art, made possible this important restoration of the Sala dell’Albergo at the Accademia Galleries. The Sala dell’Albergo was originally used as a meeting room by the board of the Scuola della Carità, the charitable institution today part of the group of buildings that host the art collection.

The Accademia Galleries host the largest collection in the world of Venetian painting. You can see masterpieces by Titian, Bellini, Giorgione, Tintoretto, Carpaccio, Veronese, and many other great artists from the 14th to the 19th century.

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Restoration at Titian's Presentation


Swimming on the Lido Beach

gondola with bath, 1865



Gondola with a wooden ‘bath’ to take a swim away from prying eyes, 1865.Swimming Costumes, 1865Swimming costumes, 1865. They are not Venetians but beach fashion in those years was quite the same in France and Italy.

Death in Venice

A scene from “Death in Venice”, 1970, by Luchino Visconti. Based on the novel of the German writer Thomas Mann, 1912. Wonderful reconstruction of the Belle Epoque spirit on the Lido beach of Venice.


The history of Perfume: a new exhibition in Ca’ Mocenigo

Green Living Room

Red Living Room

Red Living Room

The Museum of Ca’ Mocenigo, a 17th century palace in San Stae, housing furniture, paintings, plaster works, chandeliers, mirrors and costumes of the 18th century will be closed until May for a general restyling. From June 1st the museum will host a new section dedicated to the history of perfumes.
Cosmetic has an ancient tradition in Venice. Through the spice and silk routes the Venetian merchants imported raw materials such as Ceylon cinnamon or civet, lemon balm and rosa mosqueta, which were then transformed in ointment, cosmetic creams and powders.

Find a good article about the new perfume exhibition here.



Mariano Fortuny: A Wagner-Maniac.

Fortuny Parsifal

Visit the exhibition on ‘Wagnerism’ at Palazzo Fortuny.

To celebrate Wagner’s bicentenary birth the Fortuny museum organized an exhibition on the influence of Wagnerism -a true cultural fashion! – in the visual arts in Italy.
Mariano Fortuny, the Spanish artist who elected Venice to his home, was immensely fascinated by Wagnerism and dedicated to operas like Parsifal or the Meistersänger of Nurnberg several paintings which are now on display. The exhibition includes a wide-ranging documentary section on illustration, caricature, and poster design.

Fortuny: Moder for a theatre

Dress by Calugi and Gianelli

Palazzo Fortuny, first floor


Mosaics in Venice: A Tour in the Orsoni Factory

Glass tiles at the Orsoni Mosaics Factory

Glass tiles at the Orsoni Mosaics Factory. Foto credit: www. norbertheyl.com

The art of mosaic is at home in Venice and the Orsoni factory in the Cannaregio district has been producing mosaics – enamels and gold or silver leaf – since 1888. Lucio Orsoni, the last owner, is also a renowned artist that in spite of the figurative tradition uses the glass tiles to create abstract and intensely spiritual works.

Cutting the tiles at the Orsoni Mosaics Factory Foto credit: www.norbertheyl.com

Mosaicist working on a wall, inserting tiles with gold leaf. Foto credit: www.norbertheyl.com