CAMPO DELLA MADDALENA
Campo della Maddalena is one of Venice’s most intriguing spots, where so many colors glimmer off the water and the windows in an otherwise perfectly still environment. Aside from the gleams and the lights, this campo is a charming tangle of clashing angles and lines, all responding to real urban problems. Since the campo was once too low, one side was elevated to raise the level of clean water in the well cistern. The buildings with their chimneys, all in different shapes, heights and colours, create one of the most attractive sightings in the city. Campo della Maddalena is simply a great testament to the Venetian skill of turning an apparent chaos into a fascinating, pleasing urban layout.
The church of Maddalena has been here since 1222, was restored in the early 18th century under design by Tommaso Temanza, with a circular plan inspired by the Pantheon in Rome. Of great architectural value is the portal, which is a shortened pronaos, preceded by a short staircase and formed by a triangular tympanum supported by two pairs of semi-columns with Ionic capitals and entablature. Above the entrance door there is a lunette with an all-seeing eye within a twisted triangle with a bas-relief circle, often read as a Masonic symbol (it seems that the Balbo family belonged to the Templar order). The church preserves important paintings of the eighteenth century, including ‘The Last Supper’ by Gian Domenico Tiepolo and ‘The Apparition of the Virgin to St. Simon Stock’ by Giuseppe Angeli.
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