Archive for the ‘Venice’ Category

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Today we visited Carlo Scarpa’s well known renovation of the Querini Stampalis Foundation in Venice Italy, in general, it is a particularly impressive example of a renovation project which layers the past and present constructions into a powerful assemblage.

Front bridge entrance, it is closed as we visited.

Interior Hall

Plan Diagram

The Fondazione Querini Stampalia was founded in Venice 1869 by the last descendant of the Venetian Querini Stampalia. The site is composed of the living quarters, an archive, a library, and a museum of paintings and furnishings. In 1949, the Presidential Council of the Fondazione Querini Stampalia decided to begin the restoration of some parts of the Palazzo Querini. Malino Dazzi, director of the foundation, tasked Carlo Scarpa to restore the ground floor, which was in a state of neglect and decay. The project was completed just over ten years later.The restoration project included careful cleaning of four existing architectural elements: the bridge, the entrance, the portico and the garden.

Scarpa’s museum renovations exhibit his minimalist style within historic buildings, a style that allows the existing context to pass beneath and behind the new work without being disturbed. However, it was not the invention of spatial themes with which Carlo Scarpa was involved, but rather the manipulation of materials in relation to the human body.

For this visit, I focused on two aspects of the building: detail and water

Detail:

Scarpa’s expression of detail in this building varies at different scale, with different combination of materials, such as steel, concrete, glass and brick. Here are some examples I found intriguing about this building.

This is a staircase at the side entrance, it is an innovative stair to me due to the way that each step continuous and warp around the step above.

This detail shows how concrete hangs out of the brick wall, thus to give a feeling of depth.

This detail is a celebration of the intersection of steel and concrete

A fascinating column detail showing the compositional relationship of glass and concrete

An innovative door, it is a an interesting way to bring light in as well.

Water:

Scarpa is a master of using the water as a critical element in his building, what I found interesting is he introduced the experience of water in two different ways: the flowing water and the static water. For the flowing water, it creates dynamic feeling for the space, on the one hand, we can see something flowing compared to the other static objects surrounding it, on the other hand, we can hear the water as well, it is a special feeling as we could “listen” to architecture.

For the static water pool, the transparent nature of water gives us a feeling of brightness. Also, it reflects the scenario surrounding it thus giving an illusionary sense for people. Last but not least, Scarpa loves the zen idea taken from Japanese culture, the static water makes us feel peaceful. Here are some photos I took thus to support my point.

These details show how well done of the usage of water in this building.

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San Giorgio Maggiore is a 16th century Benedictine church on the island of the same name in Venice, northern Italy, designed by Andrea Palladio and built between 1566 and 1610. The church is a basilica in the classical renaissance style and its brilliant white marble gleams above the blue water of the lagoon opposite the Piazzetta and forms the focal point of the view from every part of the Riva degli Schiavoni.

Plan and section diagram of the church

Exterior:

The façade is brilliantly white and represents Palladio’s solution to the difficulty of adapting a classical temple facade to the form of the Christian church, with its high nave and low side aisles, which had always been a problem. Palladio’s solution superimposed two facades, one with a wide pediment and architrave, extending over the nave and both the aisles, apparently supported by a single order of pilasters, and the other with a narrower pediment (the width of the nave) superimposed on top of it with a giant order of engaged columns on high pedestals. This solution is similar to Palladio’s slightly earlier facade for San Francesco della Vigna, where the other parts of the church had been designed by Sansovino. On either side of the central portal are statues of Saint George and of Saint Stephen, to whom the church is also dedicated.

Interior:

What I am interested in this church is how Palladio playing with light,based on the geometry of the church, which is symmetrical along the elongated  longitudinal axis, I assume Palladio use this brilliant idea of carving in the roof to ring light in, and at the same time, the light got reflected and pointed to the longitudinal axis, thus to strengthen the feeling of the space.

Zoomed in shot of the roof, showing the reflection of the light

The bright and spacious interior is marked by symmetry, by the clam, uniform distribution of light that arrives from and so called thermal windows in the form of lunettes, divided into three parts, that reflect the religious sensitivity of monastic times.

Today we visited the boat building workshop at San Trovaso, which is next to the Church of San Trovaso along the narrow Rio San Trovaso, just north of the Zattere. it was first opened in the 17th century.Back in the 16th-century heyday of the gondola, there were upwards of 10,000 of these elegant boats plying the waters of Venice’s canals. Today there are but 350, and the job of gondoliere is still a coveted profession, passed down from father to son over the centuries.

The boatyard is surrounded by Tyrolian-looking wooden structures . I find it is a true rarity in this stone city built on water, and an oddity shared by most boatyard.The wooden structures are home to the multiple-generational owners and original workshops for the traditional boats.

Interior photo of the workshop

A quick sketch of the workshop

1.Murano island

Murano is a series of islands linked by bridges in the Venetian Lagoon, northern Italy. It lies about 1.5 km north of Venice and measures about 1.5 km (0.93 mi) across with a population of just over 5,000. It is famous for its glass making, particularly lampworking. It was once an independent comune, but is now a frazione of the comune of Venice.

Murano was initially settled by the Romans then, from the sixth century, by people from Altinum and Oderzo. At first, the island prospered as a fishing port and through its production of salt. It was also a centre for trade through the port it controlled on Sant’Erasmo. From the eleventh century, it began to decline as islanders moved to Dorsoduro. It had a Grand Council, like that of Venice, but from the thirteenth century, Murano was ultimately governed by a podestà from Venice. Unlike the other islands in the Lagoon, Murano minted its own coins.

Early in the second millennium, hermits of the Camaldolese Order occupied one of the islands, seeking a place of solitude for their way of life. There they founded the Monastery of St. Michael (Italian: S. Michele di Murano). This monastery became a great center of learning and printing. The famous cartographer, Fra Mauro, whose maps were so crucial to the European exploration of the world, was a monk of this community. The monastery was suppressed in 1810 by French forces under Napoleon, in the course of their conquest of the Italian peninsula, and the monks were expelled in 1814. The grounds then became Venice’s major cemetery.

In 1291, all the glassmakers in Venice were forced to move to Murano due to the risk of fires.[2] In the following century, exports began, and the island became famous, initially for glass beads and mirrors. Aventurine glass was invented on the island, and for a while Murano was the main producer of glass in Europe. The island later became known for chandeliers. Although decline set in during the eighteenth century, glassmaking is still the island’s main industry.

In the fifteenth century, the island became popular as a resort for Venetians, and palaces were built, but this later declined. The countryside of the island was known for its orchards and vegetable gardens until the nineteenth century, when more housing was built.

Attractions on the island include the Church of Santa Maria e San Donato (known for its twelfth century Byzantine mosaic pavement and said to house the bones of the dragon slain by Saint Donatus), the church of San Pietro Martire with the chapel of the Ballarin family built in 1506 and artworks by Giovanni Bellini, and the Palazzo da Mula. Glass-related attractions include the many glassworks, some Mediaeval and most open to the public, and the Murano Glass Museum, housed in the large Palazzo Giustinian.

2.Burano island

Burano is an island in the Venetian Lagoon, northern Italy; like Venice itself, it could more correctly be called an archipelago of four islands linked by bridges. It is situated near Torcello at the northern end of the Lagoon, and is known for its lacework and brightly coloured homes.

Burano is also known for its small, brightly-painted houses, popular with artists. The colours of the houses follow a specific system originating from the golden age of its development; if someone wishes to paint their home, one must send a request to the government, who will respond by making notice of the certain colours permitted for that lot.

Other attractions include the Church of San Martino, with a leaning campanile and a painting by Giambattista Tiepolo (Crufixion, 1727), the Oratorio di Santa Barbara and the Museum and School of Lacemaking.

3.Torcello island

Ponte del diavolo

Torcello is a quiet and sparsely populated island at the northern end of the Venetian Lagoon. It is considered the oldest continuously populatedregion of Venice, and once held the largest population of the Republic of Venice.

The former splendour of Torcello’s numerous palazzi, its twelve parishes and its sixteen cloisters has almost disappeared since the Venetians recycled the useful building material. The only remaining medieval buildings form an ensemble of four edifices.

Today’s main attraction is the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, founded in 639 and with much 11th and 12th century Byzantine work, including mosaics (e.g. a vivid version of the Last Judgement), surviving. Other attractions include the 11th and 12th century Church of Santa Fosca, which is surrounded by a porticus in form of a Greek cross, and the Museo Provinciale di Torcello housed in two fourteenth century palaces, the Palazzo dell’Archivio and the Palazzo del Consiglio, which was once the seat of the communal government. Another noteworthy sight for tourists is an ancient stone chair, known as Attila’s Throne. It has, however, nothing to do with the king of the Huns, but it was most likely the podestà’s or the bishop’s chair.

Torcello is also home to a Devil’s Bridge, known as the Ponte del Diavolo or alternatively the Pontecello del Diavolo (devil’s little bridge)

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The Peggy Guggenheim Collection is a modern art museum on the Grand Canal in Venice, Italy. The museum was originally the private collection of the American heiress Peggy Guggenheim, who began displaying the artworks to the public seasonally in 1951. After her death in 1979. it passed to the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation, which eventually opened the collection year-round. The collection is housed in the Palazzo Venier dei Leoni, an 18th century palace, which was Guggenheim’s home.

The collection is housed in the Palazzo Venier dei Leoni, which Peggy Guggenheim purchased in 1949.

After the Foundation took control of the building in 1979, it took steps to expand gallery space; by 1985, “all of the rooms on the main floor had been converted into galleries … the white Istrian stone facade and the unique canal terrace had been restored” and a protruding arcade wing, called the barchessa, had been rebuilt by architect Giorgio Bellavitis. Since 1985, the museum has been open year-round. In 1993, apartments adjacent to the museum were converted to a garden annex, a shop and more galleries.In 1995, the Nasher Sculpture Garden was completed, additional exhibition rooms were added, and a café was opened. A few years later, in 1999 and in 2000, the two neighboring properties were acquired.In 2003, a new entrance and booking office opened to cope with the increasing number of visitors, which reached 350,000 in 2007.Since 1993, the museum has doubled in size, from 2,000 to 4,000 square meters.

Since 1985, the United States has selected the foundation to operate the U.S. Pavilion of the Venice Biennale, an exhibition held every other summer. In 1986, the foundation purchased the Palladian-style pavilion, built in 1930.

Ca’ Rezzonico is a palazzo on the Grand Canal in Venice. Today it is a public museum dedicated to 18th century Venice and one of the 11 venues managed by the Fondazione Musei Civici di Venezia.

Ca’ Rezzonico stands on the right bank of the canal, at the point where it is joined by the Rio di San Barnaba. The site was previously occupied by two houses belonging to the Bon family, one of Venice’s patrician families. In 1649 the head of the family, Filippo Bon decided to build a large palazzo on the site. For this purpose he employed Baldassarre Longhena, the greatest proponent of Venetian Baroque, a style slowly replacing the Renaissance and Palladian architectural style of such palazzi as (its near neighbour) Palazzo Balbi and Palazzo Grimani built over 100 years previously. However, neither architect nor client was to see the completion of the Palazzo Bon: Longhena died in 1682, and Filippo Bon suffered a financial collapse.

The design was for a three story marble façade facing the canal. The ground floor rusticated, containing a central recessed portico of three bays without a pediment, symmetrically flanked by windows in two bays. Above this the piano nobile of seven bays of arched windows, separated by pilasters, above this the “second piano nobile” was near identical, and above this a mezzanine floor of low oval windows. The slight projection of the two tiers of balconies to the piano nobili accentuate the baroque decoration and design of the building. The palazzo today follows this form, although it was not finished until 1756 by the architect Giorgio Massari, who had been brought in to oversee the completion of the project by the new owners – the Rezzonico Family. Massari however, seems to have adhered to the original plans of Longhena, with the addition of some concepts of his own which reflected the change in architecture between the palazzo’s conception and its completion 100 years later.

The courtyard

Above are some interior images of this museum

We visited Negozio Olivetti building designed by architect Carlo Scarpa. I mainly focused on the details and materials in the building.

Quick overview of the space

Here are some detail that interests me as the way they put together

This is the detail study for this building.

Piazza San Marco is a “L” shape piazza, which is the principal public square of Venice, Italy.The Piazzetta (the ‘little Piazza’) is an extension of the Piazza towards the lagoon in its south east corner. The two spaces together form the social, religious and political centre of Venice and are commonly considered together.

Plan diagram shows the solid and void relationship of this piazza