A vi­sit to the Or­so­ni Mo­saics foun­dry, fea­tu­ring an eclec­tic meld of old and new, is an ab­so­lu­te mu­st. By Romena Brugnerotto

Where Venice - - Contents -

A vi­sit to the Or­so­ni Mo­saics foun­dry is an ab­so­lu­te mu­st

Lo­ca­ted in the pic­tu­re­sque Can­na­re­gio di­strict, ju­st steps from the Jewish ghet­to, the Or­so­ni Foun­dry, a hi­sto­ric Ve­ne­tian mo­saics fac­to­ry that te­sti­fies to the le­ga­cy of ar­ti­stic craf­tsman­ship in the Se­re­nis­si­ma, has fi­nal­ly re-ope­ned its doors to the public. Esta­bli­shed at the end of the 19th cen­tu­ry (1888), this le­gen­da­ry ate­lier has con­ti­nued to ma­nu­fac­tu­re mo­saics ba­sed on se­cret tech­ni­ques that ha­ve been han­ded do­wn through ge­ne­ra­tions to pro­du­ce Or­so­ni's tra­de­mark co­lours.

Now ow­ned by the Bi­saz­za fa­mi­ly, re­no­w­ned mo­saic ma­nu­fac­tu­rers from Vi­cen­za, the foun­dry boasts a Mo­saics School,a Co­lour Li­bra­ry and se­ve­ral spe­cial pro­jec­ts.

Whi­le tou­ring the ve­nue, Ric­car­do Bi­saz­za, the Pre­si­dent of the Or­so­ni Foun­dry, ex­plai­ned why a tour of the fa­ci­li­ty is an ab­so­lu­te mu­st.

Co­lour Li­bra­ry. The shel­ves of this unu­sual li­bra­ry do not con­tain books but ro­ws and ro­ws of co­lou­red ti­les that are used as a re­fe­ren­ce to pro­du­ce the mo­saics. Be­lie­ve it or not, one who­le shelf is de­di­ca­ted to the co­lours used to re­pro­du­ce the va­rious sha­des of hu­man skin.

Im­por­tant com­mis­sions. Or­so­ni still pro­vi­des the mo­saics used to re­sto­re the world's mo­st beau­ti­ful buil­dings, in­clu­ding the Ba­si­li­ca di San Mar­co in Venice, and the Sa­gra­da Fa­mi­lia chur­ch in Spain that was de­si­gned by re­no­w­ned Ca­ta­lan ar­chi­tect An­to­nio Gau­dí. An in­te­re­sting fact: Gau­dí asked Or­so­ni to pro­vi­de the mo­saics for the chur­ch af­ter fal­ling in lo­ve wi­th them in Pa­ris. Nu­me­rous re­quests al­so co­me from the Ea­st.

See and learn how a mo­saic is ma­de, how it is cut and pre­pa­red so that it is rea­dy to use, plus the crea­tion of gold leaf mo­saics.

Fo­cu­sing on in­no­va­tion ra­ther than sim­ply re­fe­ren­cing the pa­st, The Or­so­ni sho­w­room in Can­na­re­gio was re­cen­tly re­no­va­ted to show ar­chi­tec­ts from all over the world how mo­saics can be in­te­gra­ted in­to mo­dern hou­ses, of­fi­ces and ba­th­rooms, and the re­sult is brea­th­ta­king. >> Or­so­ni Can­na­re­gio, 1045 T: 041 2440002-3 www.or­so­

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