Tuesday, August 9, 2011

A Visit To The Peggy Guggenheim Museum Venice, Italy

I'm linking this to my friend Sandi's Tuesday Travels series here:

In early summer 2005 my daughters, Athena, Aria and I had alot of fun spending some days in Venice.

There's Athena taking in the view of the action on the canals outside our apartment,

Prior to this trip I had read two fascinating biographies on Peggy Guggenheim:

Art Lover: A Biography of Peggy Guggenheim by Anton Gil
Mistress of Modernism: The Life of Peggy Guggenheim by Mary V. Dearborn

Thus one of the things I had on my "to do" list was to visit Peggy Guggenheim's Museum located at: Dorsoduro, 70430123 Venice, Italy041 2405411 Open Mon,Wed-Sun 10am-6pm

Public transit: Zattere

The Peggy Guggenheim Collection is housed in the Palazzo Venier dei Leoni, an 18th century palace designed by the Venetian architect Lorenzo Boschetti. Purchased by Peggy Guggenheim in July 1949, the Palazzo was her home for thirty years. In 1951 the Palazzo, its garden, now called the Nasher Sculpture Garden, and her art collection were opened to the public from April to October for viewing . Her home remained open until her death in Camposampiero, near Padua, in 1979, when the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation , took on the management of the palazzo and its collection.In April 1980 the Peggy Guggenheim Collection reopened. Since 1985 it has been open year-round.

The palazzo is also nicknamed “Palazzo non finito” because though it was originally intended to be five stories high, it was only built to be one story high.

Peggy Guggenheim was born into the upper east side of New York City on August 26, 1898. Her father, Benjamin was of the wealthy Guggenheim family who made their money in metal, and her mother Florette was of the wealthy banking Seligmann family. Peggy’s childhood was privileged. She attended excellent schools, was exposed to art and theater and traveled to Europe with her family. Her story is a fascinating often sad but extremely interesting one. Her friendships and love affairs not only with the art but with many of the artists themselves is a wild adventure. She has established a wonderful collection of modern art and her palazzo provides a lovely setting for paintings and sculptures alike.

It is said that she had her own private gondola and gondolier who promptly arrived daily at sunset to sail her through the Grand Canal for her evening apperitivo at Harry's Bar.

Peggy had made a name for herself in Venice. She was known as “L’Americana con I cani,” or “The American with the dogs” thanks to her numerous precious dogs who accompanied her everywhere. In fact, fifteen of them are buried next to her today, listed by name with the birth and death dates and a plaque reading, “My Beloved Babies.”

"Angel of the City" sculpture by Marino Marini

This sculpture “Angel of the City”, notorious for depicting a statue of a naked man riding a horse in a state of arousal, is located at the main entrance in full view of the Grand Canal. Marino Marini, who completed the statue in 1948, was ordered to use a detachable penis which could be removed to spare the blushes of young ladies. During one of the many wild parties hosted by Ms. Guggenheim the original penis was stolen. Another has now been welded in place in order to prevent future thefts.

My daughters insisted on taking this picture of me making sure all the necessary parts were in tact!

Here are those two merry pranksters!

Ciao Bella Venezia!


Sandi @the WhistleStop Cafe said...

What a great post!
That is a fascinating museum.... and the location is beautiful.
I love the last picture of the girls~ precious!

fourkidsmom said...

What a great place to visit. Looks wonderful and so beautiful. Maybe someday but for now I can travl through your blog. Thanks.


Sandi @the WhistleStop Cafe said...

You did it! :-)
Now you can blog hop every tuesday... It'll be like taking a trip with me.

barb cabot said...

Thanks for all your help Sandi! Couldn't have done it without you.

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