Gli Scalzi


Gli Scalzi review Rate it

Officially Santa Maria di Nazareth, this church is better known as Gli Scalzi after the order of Carmelitani scalzi (Barefoot Carmelites) to whom it belongs. They bought the plot in 1645 and subsequently commissioned Baldassare Longhena to design the church. The fine façade (1672-80) is the work of Giuseppe Sardi; it was paid for by a newcomer to Venice's ruling patrician class, Gerolamo Cavazza, determined to make his mark on the landscape.

The interior is striking for its coloured marble and massively elaborate baldachin over the high altar. There are many fine Baroque statues, including the St John of the Cross by Giovanni Marchiori in the first chapel on the right and the anonymous marble crucifix and wax effigy of Christ in the chapel opposite. An Austrian shell that plummeted through the roof in 1915 destroyed the church's greatest work of art, Tiepolo's fresco, The Transport of the House of Loreto, but spared some of the artist's lesser frescoes, Angels of the Passion and Agony in the Garden, in the first chapel on the left, and St Theresa in Glory, which hovers gracefully above a ham-fisted imitation of Bernini's sculpture, Ecstasy of St Theresa, in the second on the right. In the second chapel on the left lie the remains of the last doge of Venice, Lodovico Manin.

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Gli Scalzi details

fondamenta degli Scalzi

Area Venice

Transport Vaporetto Ferrovia

Telephone 041 715 115

Open 7-11.50am, 4-6.45pm Mon-Sat; 4-7pm Sun.