Project Description

Marble Altarpiece of the Ecce Homo, ca. 1525
Palazzo Minelli Spada, Venice

Restoration of the Altarpiece of the Ecce Homo

Palazzo Minelli Spada, Venice

Project director
Procuratoria di San Marco;
Ministry for Cultural Heritage Office in Venice

Sansovino s.n.c., Venice

Toto Bergamo Rossi;
Venetian Heritage

Start date
Marzo 2004

End date
Maggio 2004

10.000,00 €

Venetian heritage funded the restoration of the marble altarpiece of the Ecce Homo situated in the chapel of the Casa Cardinal Piazza, now a retirement home administered by the Venetian Curia. The altarpiece carved in high relief from pietra tenera di Vicenza represents a half-length Christ as a Man of Sorrows, standing inside a sarcophagus, adored by two angels. After a century of constant displacement – from the Arsenal to the crypt, treasury and baptistry of the basilica of St. Mark, and after that to the chapel of St. Theodore behind St. Mark’s – the altarpiece of the Ecce Homo, eventually found, in 1960, a permanent site in the oratory of the retirement home. There, the altarpiece, unknown to the history of Venetian art, was discovered by Dr. Anne Markham Schulz and recognised as a work of around 1525 by the famous sculptor Gianmaria Mosca. Research by Dr. Schulz suggests that it was originally made for the church of the Venetian Convent of the Vergini, suppressed by Napoleonic decree in the early 19th century.