Tracing Venice: A mosaic work of art crafted from metal
Curated by Zanellatto/Bortotto and De Castelli
These works represent the patient and incessant work carried out over time on the decorations of St. Mark and are an authentic and sincere tribute to the lagoon city, describing its fragility but also its resilience in resisting the erosive force of the sea.
St. Mark’s Basilica is the cornerstone of the lagoon city, and it is perhaps the point most exposed and affected by the rising tide. Entering, you discover a treasure at our feet: the marvellous 12th-century polychrome mosaics that cover more than 2000 square metres of flooring. A complex and elaborate set of ornamental mosaic motifs with a profound symbolic meaning. A timeless work that encompasses distant worlds and stories.
The project recounts the designs of St. Mark’s mosaics by tracing the signs of deterioration and wear, enhanced by the shades and oxidations of the metal. In each piece, a story is told that makes the imperfection of the material a fundamental element to reflect on the importance of a fragile asset to be preserved at any cost.
Copper, brass and steel acquire multi-coloured hues and a range of extraordinary finishes in which oxidation, erosion, and brushwork transform into a breathtaking kaleidoscope of variations. Geometric shapes and colours take the form of a mosaic where differing textures alternate, meld and multiply, almost as if they were living materials.