The restoration of Giandomenico Tiepolo’s frescoes from the villa in Zianigo


The first restoration funded by the VIF back in 1998 was on the large fresco of ‘Il Mondo Novo’ (The New World) by Giandomenico Tiepolo.

The success of the initiative and the excellent results obtained from the restoration led the VIF’s members to take on the restoration of the entire cycle of frescoes from the Tiepolo family’s villa in Zianigo, a small town near Mirano, and preserved at Ca’ Rezzonico since 1936.

The villa in Zianigo was purchased by Giambattista Tiepolo in 1757 and upon his death in 1770 was bequeathed to his son Giandomenico, who had begun to fresco it as early as 1759. The importance of the cycle of frescoes lies in the fact that, being realised over a period of no less than thirty-eight years – from 1759 to 1797 – and without any commissioning constraints that imposed the subjects to be painted, it represents Giandomenico Tiepolo’s artistic career but also bears witness to the cultural change in season and taste.

At Ca’ Rezzonico, the frescoes are exhibited in six rooms that reconstruct the original interiors of the villa.
Of the 54 works that make up the entire decorative apparatus, the restoration of 51 of them was financed by the VIF. The frescoes were restored by Ottorino Nonfarmale from 1999 to 2000 during the period when the museum at Ca’ Rezzonico was closed for conservation work. 


In addition to the restoration of the painted surface, the old wooden supports were also replaced with new aluminium frames that are not affected by climatic variations and therefore do not cause movements that could cause damage or losses of the frescoed surface.


At the conclusion of the restoration, the frescoes were exhibited from 21 October 2000 to 1 April 2001 at the Museo Correr in the exhibition dedicated to them entitled ‘Satyrs, Centaurs and Pulcinellas’. 


The frescoes then returned to Ca’ Rezzonico on the occasion of the museum’s reopening in June 2001.


In 2004, on the occasion of the bicentenary of Giandomenico Tiepolo’s death, the VIF commissioned Lino Cannavacciuolo to compose some original music inspired by the frescoes, available in the CD entitled “Ca’ Nà”.