Within Piazza San Marco, or St. Mark’s Square, is the Fortuny Museum, known as Museo Fortuny in Italian. The museum was once owned by a noble Venetian family, the Pesaro’s. The Pesaro family were well-respected, 17th Century ambassadors, admirals and Doges. By the turn of the Century, Canadian-born Mariano Fortuny turned the grand Gothic structure, which was once, but of course, a palace into his own art studio and his residence. Fortuny housed his diverse collections here and his widow donated the collections to the City of Venice in the 1950s.
Fortuny was a renowned textile and stage designer, inventor, painter and photographer. Throughout the Museo Fortuny, visitors will delight in Venice’s most skilled artisans’ works such as weavings, fine lace exhibitions, and glorious gowns that were designed for sophisticated Venetian elitists. In fact, the use of open spaces was introduced to Venetian society by Fortuny and the main salon within the Fortuny Museum is a replica of a stage setting. The second floor of the museum plays with light and shading effects to reveal an accessible and unrestricted, free-flowing environment in true Fortuny style.
Fortuny’s famous lamps he designed are contained throughout the museum, as are his paintings and unique wall tapestries. Fortuny mingled art deco and art nouveau which is wondrously apparent throughout. Visitors will enjoy gorgeous ornaments, objects, fabrics, furniture and clothing, all Fortuny originals. You may visit Fortuny Museum’s official website here.
In truth, many of Fortuny’s creations are being replicated to this day and are considered must-haves for the savvy designer and for those who appreciate eclectic art, bringing it into their homes for others to admire and recognize its origins. Of special interest is a library contained within this museum that includes a wide array of contemporary works, not only of Fortuny’s, but artists and designers of very different backgrounds than Fortuny’s. Read another aticle on this website about Fortuny Museum here.
Getting there: Located on St. Mark’s Square, Fortuny Museum is an easy walk from the Rialto or Santo Stefano. The closest train or bus is S.Angelo linea 1 Actv.