MuséeVilla del Bene

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Villa Del Bene: the gate of the Venetian Republic along the ancient Via Claudia Augusta.

The villa is located a few kilometers from the Adige River along the ancient Via Tridentina and is one of the best examples of sixteenth-century architecture of the Veneto region. The plan of the building, on two floors, combines two different planimetric types; the "veneziana", which is built around a large central hall with rooms that open along the sides and the so-called "a portico and loggia", typical of the Valpolicella area.

The Villa del Bene complex is located along the banks of the Adige river at the historic core of the village of Volargne. The villa, which is divided into several buildings built in the fifteenth century and completed by 1560, hosted many prelates participating in the Council of Trento, as well as nobles and illustrious figures of the Serenissima. The building, with buildings and surrounding land, in the first half of the sixteenth century was owned by Antonio Malfatti, who between 1538 and 1539 sold it to Giovanni del Bene, who updated the original building making it paint inside.

A majestic entrance portal, already attributed to Michele Sammicheli, is decorated by a head that symbolizes Christ and a solar disk, on whose back the date is engraved 1551. Symbol of the villa, of hospitality and representation, this door not only it overlooks Via Trentina, but also on the eastern bank of the Adige, to which the complex was connected by a double row of cypresses and where there was a private pier of the Del Bene. The portal is double, with an external function of representation and a private internal function, and also symbolizes the passage from man to God.

The first courtyard has on the north side the oldest building, with the portico façade and loggia surmounted in the eaves by three oval openings. A stone arch leads into the second courtyard where there is a colombara tower with merlons, overlooking a portico with six arches with rusticated pillars. Here Benedetto Del Bene built, in the eighteenth century, the stables, a drying oven, the kitchen and an octagonal well.

Noteworthy are the frescoes painted in the internal staircase (grape pergolas with cherubs that are harvested, attributed to Domenico Brusasorzi), in the loggia (scenes of landscapes of the Adige and Chiusa, attributed to Nicola Crollanza, episodes of Roman history and telamons, attributed to at Brusasorzi), in the noble hall (eight sibyls and four scenes of the Apocalypse) and in some rooms (scenes of the Holy Scriptures, including the Holy Family, the Baptism of Jesus, the dream of Jacob, the feast of the rich Epulon, Christ on the lake of Galilee, attributed to Domenico Brusasorzi, Nicola Crollanza and Bernardino India).

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