The paintings on display here are either nearly all portraits of the Mocenigo family or depict events in which they were involved. Four of the large portraits of the walls are of the sovereigns under whom the Mocenigo family were ambassadors, while two of the seven doges from the family are portrayed above the door and the others in the long frieze below the ceiling – inspired by the one in the Sala del Maggior Consiglio in the Doge’s Palace -, together with numerous illustrious members of the family.
Room 1. The paintings in this room all belong to the museum and are of famous members of the branch of the Mocenigo family that lived here. The two paintings by Antonio Joli (Modena, 1700 – Naples, 1777) are set in Rome and refer to Piero Mocenigo (1632-1678), first ambassador to London and then in the city of the Pope pastels by Francesco Pavona (Udine, 1695 – Venice, 1777) portray the Doge Alvise IV, his wife Pisa Corner and a brother (?).
Room 2. In this room the 18th-century carved, lacquered furniture belonging to the palazzo is on display with contemporary blown glass from Murano and the paintings on the walls are from the Correr Museum collections. The valuable silk fabrics belong to the Study Centre of the History of Fabrics and Costumes – as do all the fabrics on display in the museum -, while all the Chinese porcelains come from the Treasury of the Scuola Grande di San Rocco. The ceiling fresco goes back to the period of the extensive decorations carried out in the palazzo on the occasion of Doge Alvise IV’s grandson’s wedding to Laura Corner. Here we can see the allegorical figures of Fame, Glory, and Hymen, god of marriages.
Room 3. On the table, decorated with a handmade lace tablecloth from Burano, and on the consoles is 18th-century Murano glass blown and worked by hand, while the Venetian made bottles and glasses are in ‘Bohemian’ style. The furniture belongs to the palazzo and is all from the eighteenth century, except the screen which is dated later; the paintings on the walls come from the Correr Museum and Ca’ Rezzonico collections. The allegorical fresco on the ceiling alludes to military value, guarantor of peace, prosperity and good government.
Room 4. The carved, lacquered, and gilded 19th-century furniture belongs to the palazzo; the glass pieces decorating it – from the Murano Museum – go back to the 18th century with the exception of the multicoloured filigree candleholder on the table, which is dated later. Of the paintings, the Virgin by the Bellini school belongs to the palazzo’s collections, as do the chandelier and multi-coloured wall lights in the shape of bouquets of flowers (‘a cioca’) from the eighteenth century. The Mocenigo coat-of-arms stands out on the Venetian stucco floor, while once again the ceiling fresco alludes to marriage, with Hymen coming down from heaven, the bride with the pierced heart, Cupid, Poetry and the fertility of Spring.
Room 5. The paintings in this room depict war scenes or family events related to the Mocenigo family. The naval battle is, for instance, a fight near the Island of Sapienza in Greece between pirates and Venetians led by Zaccaria Mocenigo (1634 – 1665), who preferred to set fire to his ship and die rather than fall into enemy hands. The ceiling fresco is surrounded by extensive perspective tromp l’oeil and depicts pairs of allegorical figures that are the apotheosis of the family. Of particular value the chandelier – originally part of this room’s furnishings – in blown glass and hand worked into bouquets of flowers (‘a cioca’), attributed to the most important Venetian glassmaker in the 18th century, Giuseppe Briati (Murano 1686 – Venice 1772).
Room 6. In this small room with its multicoloured stuccoes, is on display and a series of paintings from the Correr Museum.
Room 7. Once again many of the paintings in this room depict stories of the Mocenigo family. Particularly striking is the large table that has been laid and is covered with valuable ancient 13th/14th-century fabrics. Of different kinds, these items have silver and gold thread, as can be seen in the extremely rare piece of allucciolato brocade reflecting the light and producing a sparkling effect. From the same period are the glass objects (chalices, fruit stands, plates), all of which are slightly fumè, mould blown and worked freely by hand. They are from Murano, as are some of the other pieces on display here that go back to the 18th century: the candleholders and mirror with frame (soaza) decorated with glass plates, enamel amorinos and racemes.
Room 8. All the portraits on display here are of Venetian patricians, some of which belong to the palazzo – as does the furniture. Others come from the Correr collections, such as the two original paintings on fabric dedicated to Doges of another important Venetian family, the Morosini. The 17th-century glass on the consoles is from Murano.
Room 9. The paintings in this room, of which only some belong to the palazzo, evoke marine settings whilst continuing the series of famous portraits. On the left of a 19th century portrait of one of the Mocenigo doges, there is a meditative portrait of Gregorio XII, pope at the beginning of the fifteenth century, coming from the noble Venetian Correr family and one of the few to abdicate as pope. On the right is a portrait of the noble scholar Marcantonio Michiel. On the table are 16th-century ciselè soprarizzo velvets and contemporary glass pieces, mould blown or worked freely by hand. The 18th century pieces of furniture belong to the palazzo.
Room 10. The paintings by Antonio Stom on display here belong to the series of the “Splendours of the Mocenigo Family”. They refer to the visit of Princess Violante Beatrice of Bavaria (1673/1731), wife of Ferdinando de’ Medici, in the territory of the Republic of Venice, being received by a member of the Mocenigo family. The charcoal on the bureau depicts Costanza, wife of the last Mocenigo, who lived in the palazzo, bequeathing it to the city last century. The 20th century photographs depict members of the Aosta branch of the Savoia family. On the table at the back of the room are eight valuable ancient fabrics and glass from different periods: the filigree plate and the three fumé buckets go back to the 16th century, the fruit stands and candleholders to the 18th, the chalcedony chalice to the 19th and the goblet to the 20th century. The furniture is from the 18th/19th centuries and only some pieces belong to the palazzo.
Room 11. The room is dedicated to this classical male garment with more then fifty samples on display, from the Cini deposits in the collections of the Study Centre of Textile and Costume annexed to the museum. Knee long, completely buttoned up in the front and made of a valuable fabric, the waistcoat became common at the end of the 17th century. It was worn under the jacket; the front was usually made of silk and the back of linen or cotton. In that period it still had sleeves and was mainly meant as protection against the cold. It later changed form: in the 18th century – the period the models on display here were made – it was shortened and reached just below the waist, ending with two ‘tails’. At the end of the century it no longer had sleeves, but sometimes had a collar instead.
Room 12. The Mocenigo legacy also included a complex of noble archives of outstanding importance. It includes collections covering a period from the 11th to the 12th century, offering a selection of 205 archive bundles. This is a collection of outstanding historical and documentary importance that has not yet been studied in depth.
The ceramics and porcelain displayed on the first floor have been kindly lent by the Scuola Grande di San Rocco.
*We inform our visitors that some costumes included in the exhibition itinerary are unavailable due to routine maintenance. We apologize for the inconvenience