Restoration of the mosaic of the Cupola della Creazione (Dome of the Creation) in St Mark’s Basilica

The Cupola della Creazione (Dome of Creation) is located in the narthex of St. Mark’s Basilica, the space between the exterior of the basilica and the place of worship proper 

Significant damage caused by time, but above all by salt rising from the frequent high tides, had caused worrying detachments of the precious mosaic dating back to the thirteenth century. 

The decoration, entirely in mosaic, was created between 1210 and 1235 by Venetian mosaicists who had learnt the art from the Byzantine craftsmen working in Venice a century earlier.

After an intervention lasting more than five years, the skilled workers of the Procuratoria di San Marco gave new life and dazzling new colours to a work that narrates the events of the Old Testament.


The subjects depicted in the dome refer to Genesis, the first book of the Old Testament, and are stylistically inspired by the fifth to sixth-century Cotton Bible miniatures. The story unfolds in three concentric bands with a total of 26 scenes depicting the creation of the world, the first men, original sin and the expulsion from earthly paradise.


The name of the project, “On the Wings of Angels”, is inspired by the depiction of the creation of the world in which each day features the figure of the angel in increasing numbers with respect to the day of creation: one angel on the first day, two angels on the second, three on the third, up to seven angels on the last day.

The restoration of the Creation mosaic was financed by members and friends of the VIF thanks to important concerts organised in St. Mark’s Basilica, featuring Lorin Maazel, the Symphonica Toscanini, the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino Choir, the 12 cellists of the Berliner Philarmoniker with Markus Stockhausen and Mario Brunello.