Project Description

Paintings of St. Jerome in the Desert and St. Agatha in Prison, 1566
by Paolo Veronese, including the Baroque frames, Church of San Pietro martire, Murano, Venice 

project
restoration of two paintings by Paolo Veronese including the Baroque frames

location
Church of San Pietro martire, Murano, Venice

project director
Ministry of Culture, Monuments and Fine Arts
Office of Venice

contractors
Claudia Vittori, Venice;
Sansovino s.n.c. di Antonio Casellati
& Francesco Grimaldi, Venice

funding
Bulgari;
Venetian Heritage

start date
April 2016

end date
April 2017

cost
€ 62,500.00

The island of Murano was once known throughout Europe not only for its famous furnaces that produced the blown glass, but also for its numerous churches, villas, monasteries and gardens. The 19th century was unlucky for the island. Napoleonic, and later Austrian, decrees resulted in the demolition of numerous churches and monasteries. The paintings by Paolo Veronese were in the former church of Santa Maria degli Angeli, a Renaissance building that is still standing but was stripped of all its works of art in 1806. The paintings were moved to the nearby church of San Pietro martire, where they remain. Documents inform us that they were originally in the chapel of San Gerolamo and were painted by Paolo Veronese in 1566, commissioned by Francesco degli Alberi. The paintings are very dark and difficult to read, probably due to the application of varnishes that have since oxidised. The rich, carved and gilded seventeenth-century frames are in a very poor state of conservation. The restoration currently under way will return Veronese’s celebrated colours. The restoration of the paintings and frames is supported by a generous contribution from the maison Bulgari.