Tintoretto, the Venetian master, wouldn’t roll over in his grave, he’d burst out of it if he knew of Save Venice’s glorious celebration for the painter’s 500th birthday.
Born in Venice, living and working there all his life, his work is spread over the whole city in museums and churches as well as in exhibits especially mounted for this occasion and funded by Save Venice. In addition, Save Venice has restored 18 of Tintoretto’s dynamic works.
Frederick Ilchmann, SV’s chairman and a 16th-century Venetian art specialist, along with eight respected art historians, charmed and enlightened guests with talks at various venues including private viewings, happily avoiding the ever-present hordes of tourists.
As if such a feast for the eyes and mind were not enough, guests were treated to sumptuous dinners in glorious rooms like the Ballroom at the Museo Correr, the Palazzo Contarini Polignac and the Sala Capitolare in the Scuola Grande di San Rocco where a troop of actors in exquisite period dress, performed a skit in which “Tintoretto” handed over a golden chain to artist, Jorge Pombo, perhaps tomorrow’s Tintoretto.
A fleet of boats took the group to the island of Mazzorbo, to the Michelin starred restaurant Venissa for a lunch of local fish and produce and more than a taste of their unique wine made from “the golden grape of the Doges,” grown right in their own back yard.
Maybe the most fun of the weekend was the “Renaissance Artist at Work” seminar where would-be Tintorettos learned about pigments and mixing colors, then tried to make their own chalk drawings. Most emerged with a new respect for the artist.
So, mark your calendars for the 600th birthday celebration. With Save Venice in charge, you won’t want to miss it.