ATTENDING CARNEVALE IN VENICE
By Ena Escallier
Attending Carnevale in Venice is one of the most amazing cultural experiences anyone can have in all of Italy. If artistic expression is your cup of tea, then this is an event you should not miss. Your eyes will be drawn to the hues, colors and shades of the event. The week long event is a treat to the senses.
It’s believed that the Carnevale of Venice was started from a victory of the “Serenissima Repubblica” against the Patriarch of Aquileia, Ulrico in the year 1162. In honor of this victory, the people started to dance and celebrate in San Marco Square.
This festival then became official during the Renaissance. However, during the rule of the King of Austria, the festival was outlawed entirely in 1797. Even the use of masks became strictly forbidden.
After a long absence, the Venice Carnevale returned in 1979. The Italian government decided to bring back the history and culture of Venice. It used the traditional Carnevale as the centerpiece of its efforts. Reintroduction of the masks began as an effort by some college students to attract tourists.
Today, about 3 million visitors come to Venice every year for Carnevale. One of the most important events is the contest for the Carnevale’s most beautiful mask. It is chosen on the last weekend of the Carnevale. The contest is juried by a panel of international costume and fashion designers.
You can spend hours taking photographs in St. Mark’s Square alone. The architecture is a photographer’s dream. San Giorgio Maggiore, the island opposite St. Mark’s Square, offers breathtaking views as well. The bell tower vista is incredible, and there are no line ups. It’s Palladian church contains Tintoretto’s “Last Supper.” We’ll explore and capture San Giorgio Maggiore in the best light of the day.
The Grand Ball
In the evening we will capture the most decadent costumes. People will make their way to the Minuet Grand Ball for the final night of Carnival. This Ball is located on the Piano Nobile in an authentic 14th century Palace, called the Ca’ Pesaro Papafava. It has a gothic facade with gothic windows that overlook the canal of the Misericordia. The palace will be lit only with candles to help create a memorable atmosphere.
So much to see!
But the colorful scene of carnival goers won’t be the only thing you will see. You will be in Venice, so that means canals, gondolas, and blown glass. The local flavor is there waiting for you to capture it in amazing images. You can ride a water taxi, or walk through small streets and see the way people truly lived in Venice. Breathe it all in via mind, spirit, and through your lens. During the last weekend of carnival, we will photograph the winner of the most beautiful mask contest. It is the perfect ending to the perfect adventure. You will see Venice in a whole new way.
Join us on our Venice Carnevale Adventure. Explore the colors, auras, and beauty in a unique way.
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