A violin on the Grand Canal

October 18, 2021 | By Jim Stovall | Filed in: journalism.

This item cheered me up about as much as anything that has happened lately.

Earlier this month, a giant violin set sail from a workshop and Venice and floated up the Grand Canal carrying a string quartet that played a selection of music of various composers including the revered Antonio Vivaldi.

The idea was that of Livio De Marchi, a Venetian artist, and Michele Pitteri, a member of the Consorzio Venezia Sviluppo, which financed the boat and built it along with De Marchi.

“The violin is a sign of Venice restarting” after the lockdown, De Marchi said Friday during an interview in his art-filled workshop off a narrow Venetian alley in the San Marco district. (New York Times)

Italy was one of the first countries to experience a lockdown in 2020, and that lockdown as particularly severe as many Italians live in relatively small spaces are used to a great deal of street life. The violin-shaped gondola was a tribune to the country’s Covid-19 victims. The creators nicknamed it “Noah’s violin” as a sign of  hope and resurrection in the wake of a giant storm.

The ride itself was challenging for the musicians, one man and three women, who stood on the gondola barefooted to get a better grip.

You can watch part of the voyage on this YouTube video: https://youtu.be/sp38U7yxDTk


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