Welcome to our new category „Venice from A to Z“. While waiting for the Architecture Biennale in Venice to start – and to inform you about many peculiarities of the lagoon city before you visit our Meeting Point – we would like to present to you our Venice ABC in the following weeks and months.
Tourism has become a curse for Venice. Many residents have left the city, because life here has become too expensive and jobs – apart from tourism – are available almost only on the mainland. Shops, restaurants and cafes focus only on visitors. Some people call Venice the „Italian Disneyland“. About 30 million people visit Venice every year – one-day-tourists (who mainly arrive by cruise ship) are considered less profitable guests. They only visit attractions and leave little money in the city, but make up about 27 million of the 30 million guests.
…like Tizian and Tintoretto
Titian (Tiziano Vecellio), born in Pieve di Cadore, in the Dolomites, came under the Venetian spell through his apprenticeship with the Bellini clan and Giorgione. He swiftly rose to fame in Venice from 1520, then throughout Italy and Europe. In the church of Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari, one can admire the soaring Titian „Assumption“ and his „Pesaro Madonna“, works characterized by intense warm hues that are so typical of his art.
Tintoretto (Jacopo Robusti) was born in Venice around 1518. Thirty years stood between him and Titian, who was apparently his master for a while. Yet a mutual disliking seemed to take a firm hold between them, and many commissions or promises of commissions appeared as attempts to outdo or thwart the other man. In the Scuola Grande di San Rocco, seat of the brotherhood that took care of people stricken during the Black Plague, one can experience the intense atmosphere created by the massive, visionary paintings of Tintoretto, one of Venice’s more prolific artists, and creator of one of the most important cycles of paintings of the Italian Late Renaissance.
Until 1854, the Ponte di Rialto was the only bridge across the Grand Canal in Venice. Even now, there are only four bridges along the canal’s 2.5-mile (3.5 km) length. If you need to cross the canal and you aren’t near a bridge you can head for the nearest traghetto pier and get rowed to the other side. As a tourist, you’ll be expected to pay €2,–. Traghetto means „ferry“ in Italian. On Venice’s Grand Canal, traghetti are the passenger boats that cross the canal at seven points between the railroad station and St. Mark’s Basin. The boats are large gondolas without bow decoration, brocaded chairs, and other luxury trimmings. They are rowed by two oarsmen: one who stands behind the passengers like a traditional gondolier, the other closer to the bow. Most traghetti have been operated by the same families for generations. As recently as the 1950s, there were some 30 of these gondola ferry routes. Today, there are officially seven.
POINTS of contact offers a legendary Meeting Point for architects during the opening week of the Architecture Biennale (23.–28.5.2018). Read more