Dimension: Two Venetian Scole

Dimension: Two Venetian Scole is a project by Milestone Architecture PLLC. As an Advisory Board member, I contribute to the research, grant writing, editing, catalogue, and exhibition design for this project.

Scole (literally “Schools”) were confraternity institutions in Venice founded as early as the 13th century as charitable and religious organizations for the laity. This project focuses on the 16th- and 17th-century structures and interior artworks of two scole: Scola del Cristo and Scola dei Mercanti. This map indicates their locations in the city.

side of a red building with white front
Scola del Cristo
canal with boats in front of red buildings
Scola dei Mercanti

Dimension: Two Venetian Scole aims to utilize cutting-edge architectural survey technology in an effort to conserve the current state of vital landmarks in the city’s built environment.

white building

white building with canal in front of it

We are pursuing artistic and architectural 3D-laser-scanning surveys with photogrammetry to capture and make public extremely accurate images of the structures.

empty room with windows and red ceiling
A bare room in the Scola dei Mercanti today.
painting of angel flying in red dress and woman in blue dress in a brown room with columns
“The Annunciation” by Veronese, 1578. Now in the Gallerie dell’Accademia, Venice, it originally adorned a wall in the Scola dei Mercanti.

Our research and scans also reveal and provide context for many of the original artworks, such as “The Annunciation” by Veronese — which once adorned a wall in the Scola dei Mercanti. Many important paintings are now displaced from the architecture and kept in museum collections. While they have been well preserved and broadly viewed in museums, the scole structures themselves have been stripped of their colorful interior imagery, which would also provide the modern visitor with an understanding of the past culture of the scole. In an effort to recuperate culture of this important part of Venetian history, we propose a public exhibition that will restore illuminated simulations of original artworks to the walls and ceilings.

interior of room with a man standing by tables holding many small items
Recent use of a room in Scola del Cristo for a fund-raising rummage sale.

In addition to inscribing the physical space with digital projections, Dimension: Two Venetian Scole also acts as means of giving agency to the local population to catalyze future conservation and artistic projects at their discretion. In collaboration with the interests of the local population, we will also propose new and future reuses of the buildings, which could hold great potential for sustainably revitalizing the structures themselves and restoring their community to prominence.

To learn more about how you can support Dimension: Two Venetian Scole, check out this video: https://vimeo.com/272680515