Viva Venezia!

The invention of Venice in the 19th century

Belvedere, Vienna, Austria

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This exhibition of the creation of Venice was indeed a pivotal moment as expressed eloquently by the Belvedere. However, not only was it pivotal due to the depiction of Sissi, the famous Hapsburg Empress Elisabeth of Austria in the 1955 film that is deeply embedded in the souls of so many Austrians, but this exhibition enriched me deeply.

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During my visit, I was blessed to have an interesting discussion with the curator on duty at that time, who is a well-educated Rumanian. We somehow forged trust with each other and exchanged our perspectives on history whilst surrounded by astonishing artistic depictions of Venice. The ethnic diversity in the Hapsburg-dominated empire and the clear polarisation of society between rich and poor souls were well depicted.

On the one hand, one could see the high aristocracy displaying glamour and realm in magnificent splendor. On the other hand, there were mirrors of poverty where buildings were decaying, and children were standing trying to gain food.

One sees the powers at play, with ships displaying the flags of various nations, including the British Empire, which were most certainly linked with trading in this incredibly famous city located on the lagoon embracing the Adriatic Sea.

The display also told the story of romanticism in Venice and, its fateful character.

Below you can gain an impression of the exhibition which I thoroughly recommend visiting.

John 4 March 2022