Art, photography, design and innovation: eight not-to-be-missed things to do in Venice in December
Christmas is approaching and you can not stay at home: exhibitions, cocktails, concerts and clubs open in the city; there is a buzz of design, jazz, art and performance events. Here is our selection of eight things to do in Venice in December.
1 – If you are looking for design and independent craftsmanship in Venice have a look at: Ve.NICE STUFF
The independent and sustainable design show aimed at the discovery, promotion and enhancement of the Venetian design and craftsmanship. We have been waiting the whole year to see the magic event of Ve.NICE STUFF, the independent design review in Venice born from an idea by Kanz Architetti, now at its glorious fifth edition. From December 13th to 16th it is possible to discover and buy the products of the 20 selected designers.
The creators Antonella Maione and Mauro Cazzaro (Kanz Architetti) explain that the focus is on the collaboration between design and craftsmanship aimed at the survival of the artisan know-how. A sustainable production, an activity suited to complex historical centres such as the city of Venice and the attention to craftsmanship and transversal skills are the main focus of what is now becoming the most innovative platform for Venetian and Made in Italy designers.
From fashion to home furnishing, from jewellery to graphics, from lighting to textiles, the event of this year is set in a place that has made the history of craftsmanship in the city: the UNISVE Laboratory, now home of the Unione Stuccatori Veneziani and former venue of the historic Salvagno carpentry workshop until 2015, a symbol of the continuity between tradition and modernity. You can find it between Campo Santa Margherita and Campo San Barnaba, in Fondamenta del Squero, almost at the bottom of Ponte dei Pugni. Do not miss the opening on Thursday, December 13th at 6pm and the end of show party.
Ve. Nice Stuff Opening Cocktail
Thursday, December 13th
6 pm, free admission
dj The Professor
Ve. Nice Stuff Open Party
Saturday 15 December
7 pm, free admission
dj Jack Torsani
Andreina Brengola, Anna Clara Zambon, Apart Lab di Daniela Giacometti, Chiara CuceLuce, Davide Brugiolo, IN.ZU, Ivdesign, KANZ Architetti, Krakat, Studio Nicola Tessari, Padovanelle Studio, Francesca Paolin, Raffaella Brunzin, SpazioTasso, studio saòr, Studio Tanto, Talking Hands, VeniceFactory, Vitruvio Design e FabLab Venezia.
2 – Go to a jazz concert at the Hotel Londra Palace’s Improvised Lounge
The young Florentine pianist Alessandro Lanzoni is one of the most interesting personalities of the Italian jazz scene and plays on Wednesday 12th December for the preview of the Hotel Londra Palace Improvised Lounge, a series of meetings and concerts that will last until May 16th, 2019, conceived by the journalist Elena Ferrarese , curated and moderated by the music critic Enrico Bettinello and the musicologist Veniero Rizzardi. As a guest of the project Jazz Area Metropolitana by Nicola Fazzini and Alessandro Fedrigo, Lanzoni will propose a perfect combination of his original compositions, free improvisations and references to jazz standards.
3 – Go to an opening: Caffè Vergnano launches its new season
Thursday, December 13th from 7pm onwards the new Caffè Vergnano 1882 in Rialto reopens its doors with a cocktail party: aperitifs, pastry, tea room, cafeteria and events, the Vergnano returns to be one of the places of the Venice dolce vita. It offers a new design and a new culinary proposal: the excellent Italian espresso coffee (it is one of the most ancient Italian roasters) is accompanied by Venetian spritz and cicchetti, a renewed menu and a new, luxurious and colourful pastry selection. Events and evenings with DJ sets, meetings and parties are scheduled for all 2019.
4 – Spend a day at M9, the Multimedia Museum of the Italian Twentieth Century
The city of Mestre will no longer be the same after the opening of the M9 multimedia museum: the great urban regeneration project wanted by the Venice Foundation and signed by the Berlin-based studio Sauerbruch Hutton, has enriched Mestre’s cultural and entertainment offer. It is a museum that shows the greatest transformations of the last century told with the most advanced multimedia technologies and with installations of communication studies of young artists; it is also an urban project with spaces for teaching, co-working, restaurants and cafes, boutiques and meeting areas.
5 – An aperitif with Willy Ronis photography at the Casa dei Tre Oci
At the Casa dei Tre Oci we will celebrate Christmas arrival with the exhibition of one of the greatest interpreters of twentieth century photography, protagonist of the French humanist current; there will be a photo-aperitif on December 13th at 6pm and a guided tour on December 14th at 3pm edited by the artistic director Denis Curti. On display there will be 120 vintage images, including an unpublished series of ten dedicated to Venice, but also documents, books and letters never before exhibited. In the photographs, Willy Ronis shows his interest in the human condition, daily gestures and the most humble situations in order to find a universal existential meaning.
On Sunday, December 16th at 4 pm, there will be a free workshop for adults and children to discover the five rules of Ronis: patience, reflection, time, chance, form. Reservation required.
6 – Participate in a body art festival: Venice International Performance Art Week
Venice hosts one of the most interesting festivals of body art and performance, a project created by the Italian-German duo VestAndPage that brings fresh ideas and openness to new communication styles in the city: the Venice International Performance Art Week.
On Saturday 15th December, at Palazzo Mora, starting from 4pm, the festival will open with a new series of meetings on performance: BODY MATTERS, with the performance ANAM CARA – Dwelling Body, a place of multiform residences, real and imaginary, inhabited by biographies, dreams and intertwined destinies.
Motifs and visions are reflected and interpenetrated forming a single body that absorbs images, languages, looks. As the words ‘anam cara’ suggests, artists – soul friends – gather, compare their emergencies and reveal the treasured intimacies of their lives. New creation processes are born when the artists recognize themselves in their gestures, in the hunt of a common origin where it is possible to determine a sense of belonging beyond the norm, morality and thoughts.
7 – Look at Tintoretto under a new light at the Scuola Grande di San Rocco
In honour of the 500th anniversary of Tintoretto’s birth an extraordinary intervention by iGuzzini and Studio Pasetti Lighting Lighting brings the light back to Tintoretto’s work in the Chapter Hall of the Scuola Grande di San Rocco.
The new LED lighting allows an innovative use of Tintoretto’s sixteenth-century canvases and the architectural context that surrounds them, enhancing the artistic heritage of the room. The viewer finds himself inside the emotional painting of Tintoretto, made of pure colour brushstrokes and symbolic elements of his maximum expressive force. An experience that can not be renounced because until recently the room had always remained in dim light and direct lighting was reflected on the canvases, preventing to fully enjoy the suggestions created by one of the greatest Venetian artists.
8 – Discover Burano with the photographic exhibition by Maurizio Rossi -Tenuta Venissa
The Tenuta Venissa on the Mazzorbo Island is one of Venice hidden gems, a vineyard on Mazzorbo Island, which together with Torcello and Burano represents the Native Venice, and offers emotions even in winter: the vineyard is a beautiful park for the inhabitants of the island, and it is an ancient Vigna Murata where the autochthonous Dorona grape grows, the golden grape, from which the Venissa wine is made. To fully experience the island you can taste the traditional ingredients interpreted by the contemporary Venissa Restaurant, which from this year remains open also during the winter.
The beautiful spaces of Venissa are now hosting the photographic exhibition of Maurizio Rossi dedicated to the Crafts of the Native Venice, black and white shots of the last artisans of the lagoon. “I see that these jobs are gradually disappearing” says Maurizio Rossi “and the only things that will one day remain are the photos we take today”.
From Mazzorbo it is easy to reach the colourful island of Burano, to visit during the winter days when it is not crowded and the bright colours of the houses stand out in the fog. Burano is the island of lace, which Atelier Martina Vidal supports with precious home creations and a collection of dresses with light nuances. A combination of ancient traditions and contemporary innovation to bring out the creative character of the artisan excellences of the territory.
Opening: Thursday 13th December at 6 pm
Open Party: Saturday 15th December at 7 pm
Timetable: open Thursday, December 13th from 2 to 10 pm Friday 14th, Saturday 15th and Sunday 16th from 11 am to 10 pm
Dorsoduro 3077, Fondamenta del Squero (Ponte dei Pugni)
Tel. 041 5225023
The Improvised Lounge with Alessandro Lanzoni
Wednesday December 12th at 7pm
Opening Caffè Vergnano 1882 Venice
Thursday, December 13th at 7pm
Rialto, Campo San Giacometto and Campo dell’Erbaria
San Polo, 129
Tel. 041 2770948
Willy Ronis’ photographs
Thursday, December 13th at 6 pm: Photo-aperitif
Sunday 16th December at 4 pm Free workshop for families
Casa dei Tre Oci
Fondamenta delle Zitelle, 43 Giudecca
Tel. 041 2412332
M9 – Museum of the 900
Via Giovanni Pascoli 11
30171 Venezia Mestre
Tel. 041 2387230
Venice Performance Art Week
Saturday 15th December at 3 pm Performance Anam Cara Dwelling Body Palazzo Mora Strada Nova, 3659 Tel. 347 144 8744 www.veniceperformanceart.org
Tintoretto ritrova la luce
Scuola Grande San Rocco San Polo, 3052 Tel. 041 5234864 www.scuolagrandesanrocco.org
I Mestieri della Venezia Nativa, photographic exhibition by Maurizio Rossi
Photo exhibition open until 6th January Tenuta Venissa
Fondamenta di Santa Caterina, 3, Mazzorbo Tel. 041 5272281