The villas of Vicenza: the villa Rotonda and the frescoes of Tiepolo
Visit the villas near Vicenza, Villa Rotonda by Palladio, Villa Valmarana ai Nani and Villa Cordellina Lombardi with the paintings of Tiepolo.
A short walk from the historic centre of Vicenza you can reach some splendid Venetian villas, rich in masterpieces and charm.
The most famous, the “VILLA ROTUNDA” of Palladio is just a few steps from the city centre.
THE VILLA ALMERICO CAPRA, called “LA ROTONDA” by Palladio
Near the center of Vicenza we find Villa Rotonda, a masterpiece by Andrea Palladio, an icon for excellence of classical art, and an ideal synthesis of Renaissance architecture.
Built in the shadow of the Sanctuary of Monte Berico, villa Rotonda by Palladio is perfectly inserted in the natural environment and dominates the landscape from the top of the hill where it is located.
Four identical facades and a central dome, a circle inscribed in a square, all the measures calculated according to the golden proportion: the harmony of this villa’s shape lies in the perfectly calculated simplicity, the genius of Palladio is express at its best here.
The villa was built for a bizarre Vicentine, Paolo Almerico, who asked Palladio for a building in which he could distinct himself and assert his social position. Today the villa belongs to the Valmarana family who with skillful and painstaking restoration has brought villa Rotonda to its former glory.
THE VILLA VALMARANA, called “AI NANI”
The legend of the unhappy princess Laiana, imprisoned in the villa Valmarana because of her deformity, takes inspiration from the statues of the dwarfs in the garden of the Villa, located in a splendid setting a few steps from the centre of Vicenza and villa Rotonda by Palladio.
The villa Valmarana ai Nani was built during the 1600s and it is famous for the masterful cycle of frescoes created by Giambattista and Giandomenico Tiepolo the following century: the love stories between Aeneas and Dido, Medoro and Angelica, Achille and Briseide, is a plunge in the era of melodramas and epic heroes, opening up as curtains to the visitors of the villa.
During the tour I will lead you through the legends and I will tell you the epic deeds of the knights in love who inspired the artistic genius of Tiepolo, surely among the greatest eighteenth-century decorators of the Venetian villas, the last representative of the glories of the Venetian aristocracy before the fall of the Serenissima Republic.
…a definitely memorable experience!
THE VILLA CORDELLINA LOMBARDI
It is certainly the best example of Palladian-style eighteenth-century architecture. The brightness and grace of the building are complemented by the splendid frescoes painted by Giambattista Tiepolo in the main hall.
Tiepolo was involved in the decoration of the hall of honor immediately after the Villa Cordellina was accomplished. We are in full Enlightenment, Newton’s revolutionary ideas and his theory on the decomposition of the light beam affect also the artists, and Tiepolo in particular.
When Carlo Cordellina asked him to depict the wise and noble deeds of Scipio the African and Dario of Persia on the walls of his new villa, the greatest Venetian painter of the 1700s put into effect all of innovations of his time creating a kaleidoscope of light , color and melodramatic actions, typically Baroque.
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