The Unfinished Palazzo characters ☆ 0

review Ô PDF, DOC, TXT or eBook Ó Judith Mackrell

The story of Venice’s “Unfinished Palazzo”― told through the lives of three of its most unconventional passionate and fascinating residents Luisa Casati Doris Castlerosse and Peggy GuggenheimCommissioned in 1750 the Palazzo Venier was planned as a testimony to the power and wealth of a great Venetian family but the fortunes of the Veniers waned midconstruction and the project was abandoned Empty unfinished and decaying the building was considered an eyesore until. Abandoned once unfinished on Venice’s Grand Canal; “il palazzo non finite” was once an unloved guest among its opulent neighbours Yet in the 20th century it played host to three unconventional women who would take the city by stormThe staggeringly wealthy Marchesa Luisa Casati made her new home a belle époue fantasy and herself a living work of art; notorious British socialite Doris Castlerosse welcomes film stars and royalty to the glittering parties; and American heiress Peggy Guggenheim amassed a collection of modern art that draws visits from around the worldThis is an absolutely amazing and mesmerizing book; in fact I am uite overwhelmed by it The fact that three women during the 20th century could indeed have had such an impact on a palace previously owned by the Venier family when plans had been on hand to develop it to three floors Whether finances were involved or lack of an heir is unknown but this never happenedWhen Luisa Casati took the palazzo over on a rental basis in 1910 which lasted fourteen years and then she had to be evicted as it was finally sold in 1920 and sold resold in1924 The palazzo was a ruin when she took it over with ivy everywhere on the outside and the only intact section was the waterfront terrace She did very little to the exterior but she converted the inside and had the most amazing parties that everyone in Venice talked about She wasn’t there all the year but when she was everyone had their gaze on the palazzo Her mode in dressing was highly eccentric; she also had a menagerie of snakes peacocks a cheetah and albino birds which were painted to suit the occasion and her personal dogs to name but a few In fact she became so enamoured of her snakes that she often had one draped around her throat when she entertained The most remarkable thing was that when she went to the United States for a visit her new snake escaped from its cage and rumour had it in third class that a young girl had been swallowed by a boa constrictor Also when she strolled around Venice she had a cheetah admittedly on a lead either carried by her or her faithful black servant Garbi There were many rumours involving Garbi especially as Luisa did not have her husband with herLuisa also had many lovers but the most notable was the poethistorianwar hero Gabriele D’Annunzio Their relationship was uite amazing as well as their correspondence when they were not together I loved it all And also the artist August JohnBut the end of Luisa’s life was uite extraordinary I confess I had to read the final sentence here several timesAll in all what Luisa achieved was remarkable and the black and white images portray this so well especially the photo taken by Man Ray who appeared to capture the essence and soul of this remarkable womanThe second chatelaine Doris Castlerosse had been a girl from a south London suburb She purchased the palazzo in 1936 and renovated all of it magnificently but although her parties were indeed famous the war intervened in 1939 and she never returned She had been looking for a title even though having left the ranks of a shop girl and subseuently moving into the “professional mistress” status to help her financially worried about getting older and losing her looks she finally married the Irish Viscount Valentine Castlerosse He adored Doris although it was not reciprocated as she had many lovers I often wonder that whey did about birth control then or did they resort to abortions They finally divorced but he continued to love her

review The Unfinished Palazzo

The Unfinished PalazzoThe early twentieth century when it attracted and inspired three women at key moments in their lives Luisa Casati Doris Castlerosse and Peggy GuggenheimLuisa Casati turned her home into an aesthete’s fantasy where she hosted parties as extravagant and decadent as Renaissance court operas spending small fortunes on her own costumes in her uest to become a “living work of art” and muse Doris Castlerosse strove to make her mark in London and Venice during the glamoro. Ladies who launchJudith Mackrell tells the stories of three 20th century women who refused to be circumscribed by the comfortable circumstances of their birth launching themselves into wider society as creatures of their own design Luisa Casati and Peggy Guggenheim were born into tremendous wealth but even the deeply middle class Doris Castlerosse could easily have settled for a conventional existence Instead these women were not content to simply be ‘ladies who lunch’ and each of them used the Palazzo Venier in Venice at some point in their lives to help them realise their ambitions Luisa is perhaps the most contradictory character of the three a curious blend of the desperately shy and the outrageously flamboyant Luisa in this age would probably be considered on the spectrum With her exotic garb dangerous house pets and wild parties at the Palazzo she saw herself as ‘a living work of art’ Doris was determined to land herself a lord She slept her way into high society and is perhaps most famous for her suspected affair with Winston Churchill This is covered in Mary S Lovell’s The Riviera Set and if you liked that book you’ll almost certainly like this onePeggy Guggenheim was part of the Manhattan’s Upper East Side Jewish elite though at heart a Bohemian wannabe When she bought the Palazzo in 1949 she transformed it from a half finished shell into one of the most successful modern art museums in the worldThese three women had no ualms about flouting the conventions of their day be they sexual sartorial or financial They loved attention they loved Venice but above all they loved themselves – or so their self centredness would seem to indicate and the Palazzo Venier on the Grand Canal was the perfect launching pad The moral if there is one might well be If you want to get ahead get a gondola This is a tremendously interesting read flawlessly written and highly recommended

Judith Mackrell Ó 0 characters

The Unfinished Palazzo characters ☆ 0 è The story of Venice’s “Unfinished Palazzo”― told through the lives of three of its most unconventional passionate and fascinating residents Luisa Casati Doris Castlerosse and Peggy GuggenheimCommissioned in 1750 the Palazzo Venier was planned as a testimony to the power and wealth of a great VeUs hedonistic interwar years hosting film stars and royalty at glittering parties In the postwar years Peggy Gugenheim turned the Palazzo into a model of modernist simplicity that served as a home for her exuisite collection of modern art that today draws tourists and art lovers from around the world Each vivid life story is accompanied by previously unseen materials from family archives weaving an intricate history of these legendary art world eccentrics69 illustrations. For anyone who has ever fallen in love with Venice and also been to the Guggenheim museum this is the only thing to read One of the best books ever not just on Venice just magnificent Hurry and read this one and fall in love all over again