Visit one of the most beautiful palazzi of the Canal Grande – the rightfully named “house of gold”, or Ca d'Oro. The ancient patrician 15th century residence is home to the art collection Baron Giorgio Franchetti, which he donated to the Italian state. The palazzo is decorated in the Venetian Gothic style and has been lovingly restored and preserved though the ages, guaranteeing a fascinating architectural experience ... More info ›
Visit one of the most beautiful palazzi of the Canal Grande – the rightfully named “house of gold”, or Ca d'Oro. The ancient patrician 15th century residence is home to the art collection Baron Giorgio Franchetti, which he donated to the Italian state. The palazzo is decorated in the Venetian Gothic style and has been lovingly restored and preserved though the ages, guaranteeing a fascinating architectural experience. Admire paintings of the Venetian school including the famous San Sebastiano by Andrea Mantegna, works of the Tuscan and the Flemish schools, plus wonderful bronze and Renaissance statues. There is also an interesting collection of ceramics recovered from the Venetian lagoon.
Ca' D'Oro represents the highest and most complete example of the new gothic arquitecture between the end of the 14th Century and the first half of the 15th Century. Palace was built between 1421 and 1440 by Marino Contarini, rich venetian merchant, on the area of a previous venetian-bizantine residence. To its creation took part celebrities like Marco d'Amadio, Matteo Raverti, Giovanni and Bartolomeo Buon, that was also the author of the well in the patio.
Reconstructed on the ancient storey for the previous residence, three archs were added in the innovative project. The whole facade is covered by marble of various shades, underlined by the Verona's red marble, used in the three small coluimns of the second arch. From the floor, a high wall separates the patio from the street, where one can enter through an impressive door crowned by an angel holding the coat of arms of the Contarini family.
Divided among the heirs after Conatrini's death, Ca' D'Oro passed from hand to hand, experiencing internal changes that caused a strong degrade; to the end of the 19th Centurym it was restored by Giovanni Meduna, who arbitrarily added some inexisten parts, by analogy to others. Purchased in 1894 by Baron Giorgio Franchetti, the parts added by Meduna were removed and the palace was taken as much as possible to its 15th Century look, with the addition of mosaics in the entrance floor following the marcian model, and adding red and white marble inthe walls.
Baron Franchetti, that had an important colection of art works, decided to create a museum with its collection and the arquitecture of the palace. At the beginning of the First World War, he found himself in economic difficulties, so he decided to donate the Ca D'Oro and his collection to the State, that from then supported him in the commitment, adding to the Franchetti other collections that were property of the State, and offering him officials to collaborate with to create the museum, that baron was not able to view because of his death.
In addition to the Franchetti collection, that contains paintings (mainly from Tuscany and central Italy, as well as important venetian and flemish pieces), sculptures, carpets, tapestriesand furniture, museum includes sculptures coming from churches destroyed furing the fall of the Venice Republic, from destroyed monuments, bronzes and medals from an ancient paduan collection passed to the Venice Republic, paintings, frescoes and a collection of flemish painting and terracotta models coming from the warehouse of the Accademia Galleries.