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In contrast with the important cycle of frescoes by Zelotti, Villa Emo’s sculptural decoration is not particularly significant. It is limited to the main pediment’s gable made by the sculptor Alessandro Vittoria and to the statues in the front garden of the villa and under the barchesse

Alessandro Vittoria
(Trento 1525 - Venice 1608)

The sculptor, Alessandro Vittoria, was born in Trento but, as a young man, he moved to Jacopo Sansovino's workshop in Venice where he learnt his craft.  Thanks to him he took part in the prestigious decoration of the Golden Staircase in the Doge's Palace and realized the Cariatidi at the entrance to the Libreria Marciana. In the Venice workshops, he came into contact with the most influential people of the day, and thanks to his skill as a portrait artist, he became one of the protagonists of the artistic activity in the town with his stuccoes, and his marble and bronze works. He decorated the Grimani Chapel at San Sebastiano and created the statues for the altar in the church of Saint Francis of the Vigna. He also worked with Palladio on the decoration of Palazzo Thiene in Vicenza and of Villa Pisani at Montagnana. Vittoria is also attributed with the design of the stucco decoration and most of its realization in Villa Barbaro at Maser and the sculptures on the pediment of Villa Emo in Fanzolo.


Like in Villa Barbaro in Maser, which is of the same period and not very far, the pediment’s gable in Villa Emo is decorated by the sculptor from the Trentino region, Alessandro Vittoria. The approach of the sculptor for Villa Barbaro, is very different to that for Villa Emo. At Villa Barbaro the sculptor opted for a majestic solution outside the geometric and spatial canons, probably on request of the learned owners, the brothers Daniele and Marcantonio Barbaro, with two significantly projectin...

The collocation of the sculptures in the front garden of Villa Emo, dates back to the 1920s. This thesis is supported by the considerations regarding the inheritance when Venier took over from Carlo Emo-Capodilista in 1921. Among the assets inherited by the latter there is Villa Contarini-Venier in Vò Euganeo and the statues that adorned this villa’s garden reached Fanzolo between 1921 and 1925 to embellish the garden. The sculptures dating back to the 16th century and by unknown artists, seem b...

The winged Victories and the statues in the garden are not the only sculptures in Villa Emo. Part of this decorative sector is the wooden coat of arms which is located on the northern wall in the central hall and covers the third window that used to illuminate the place. The coat of arms was once placed on the transom of Angelo Emo’s flagship (1731-1792), the last great Capitano da Mar of the Serenissima Republic. The enormous wooden sculpture, about two metres wide and two and half high, probab...

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Villa Emo

Via Stazione 5, 31050 Fanzolo di Vedelago (TV) | Italy -

T 0423-476355

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