see + do
Dominican + Franciscan Churches, Venice
Concierge.com's insider take:
When the Dominicans and Franciscans arrived in Venice at the dawn of the Renaissance, they enticed parishioners by filling their churches with art. The works in some of these churches rival the exhibits in major art museums. The Dominicans' immense church of Santi Giovanni e Paolo, for example, was begun in 1246: a polyptych by Giovanni Bellini, magnificent ceiling paintings by Paolo Veronese, and works by Titian and Lorenzo Lotto were all commissioned as adornment. The Franciscans fought back in the 1330s with Santa Maria Gloriosa dei Frari (generally known as I Frari). This church definitely has the artistic edge, starting with Titian's extraordinary Assumption, with the Virgin Mary soaring heavenward above the high altar in a swirl of sumptuous hues. Titian's gracious Madonna di Ca' Pesaro (pictured) dominates the left aisle, while the Madonna and Child in the sacristy is arguably one of Giovanni Bellini's finest works.
SANTI GIOVANNI E PAOLO
Castello, Campo Santi Giovanni e Paolo
Tel: 39 041 523 5913
Open Mon–Sat 7:30–12:30 and 3:30–7, Sun 3–6
SANTA MARIA GLORIOSA DEI FRARI
San Polo, Campo dei Frari
Tel: 39 041 522 2637
Open Mon–Sat 9–6, Sun 1–6
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