Villa Cornaro

Via Roma, 35 - 35017 Piombino Dese - Padua   see map - Contact
Villa Cornaro in Piombino Dese, one of the examples of the art of Andrea Palladio in the Province of Padua. In this magnificent setting you can experience intense moments in a villa full of history and art, fully recovered and returned to its former glory.

Villa Cornaro History

In the sixteenth century the property and the taste of living in the countryside had definitely established themselves among the Venetian nobility: splendid villas stood in the plains and on the hills, to signal with their presence the possession on the reclaimed lands. But it was Palladio who raised the phenomenon of the country patrician residence to a universal representative value.

In this context the noble Venetian family of the Cornaro family had hitherto supplied many heads of state and military commanders to Venice for more than six hundred years; however, Giorgio Cornaro did not become famous thanks to politics (although he was a member of the Grand Council), neither for military exploits nor for his wealth: it is remembered in history because in 1551 he commissioned architect Andrea Palladio to build a villa in his property of countryside in Piombino Dese.

The site dedicated by Cornaro to his residence was a sort of challenge for the architect, both for the limited space and for the proximity of the important villa of Andrea Cornaro, Giorgio's brother, of which unfortunately today there is no trace.

This work by Palladio expresses serenity and beauty in the classic proportion of the constituent elements, both internal and external. The project of Villa Cornaro is guaranteed by the architect already in the manuscript fragments and in his treatise (I Quattro Libri dell'Architettura) and further endorsed by Vasari, who speaks of it in the 1568 edition of the Lives.

The Cornaro residence in Piombino is one of the few villas in which Palladio did not foresee the lateral barchesse, due to the limited space available. The project drawn up in the winter of 1551-52 is based on a square plan with two facades: both facades have a pronaos with a double order of columns and all the external walls are striped by the dense weave of the gentle bugnato.

Built as a suburban residence, Villa Cornaro is characterized by the presence of two overlapping loggias: the solution, generally adopted for city buildings, is unusual for a rural dwelling.

The Palladian solution for the villa with the double-loggia façade, had great success and an extraordinary impact on the following architecture: as a flexible structure and susceptible of infinite variations, it was the building element of the Palladio most imaged and imitated in neoclassical architecture English and American.

The interior rooms are decorated with a cycle of frescoes, consisting of 104 scenes and a must visit the refined "Italian style" gardens. The park on the back, however, gravitates around the circular fountain, in the past used as a fishmonger and two rows of cypress trees accompany the view from the villa to the countryside.

Villa Cornaro

Time period
  • 1500s
  • Italy, Padua
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Villa Cornaro
  Via Roma, 35 - 35017 Piombino Dese
  +39 049 9365017

Villa Cornaro
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