GREAT ARCHITECTURAL HOMES

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Water-gates of open ironwork in geometrical patterns, loosely reminiscent of the latticed bronze doors of San Marco, screen the entrance. These offer enticing glimpses through the ground-floor androne to the luminosity of the garden beyond. Inside, Scarpa exploited the ground floor’s tendency to flood by running water channels through the interior fig. 179. Thus the visitor has to negotiate a series of raised platforms and bridges, connected by steps arranged in endlessly inventive configurations. In the garden, the water flows out along artfully contrived concrete channels and trickles discreetly into shallow pools. Abstracted details in marble and stone, seemingly inspired by Japanese gardens, enliven the conjunctions of water, hard landscape and greenery. Because of the low water pressure Venice has never been a city of fountains, but here Scarpa orchestrated a magical water garden using only the tiniest changes of level. The idea of employing a great non-Italian architect in Venice had not been forgotten since the rejection of Frank Lloyd Wright’s project.
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