Carlo Scarpa's design for Olivetti shop.
In 1957, Adriano Olivetti commissioned the Venetian architect Carlo Scarpa to create a showcase for his business in Piazza San Marco.
The interior still today achieves a captivating equilibrium between functionality and style, with at its heart a light-filled space embellished by the Alberto Viani sculpture Nude in the Sun, which welcomes visitors into the showroom. But the true touch of genius is the extraordinary central staircase, seemingly suspended in the void – a bona fide masterpiece of lightness and dynamism. It is a rhythm that also marks out the spaces of the two long galleries on the upper floor, home to a number of small office spaces and to a part of the exhibition of vintage Olivetti typewriters and calculators. Scarpa’s gift is also evident in the painstaking choice of materials: Aurisina marble, rosewood, African teak, metals and stone are all found alongside traditional Venetian stucco and mosaics. It is a design with great expressive and cultural impact that, after years of neglect, was given back to the city by Assicurazioni Generali, at the urging of FAI, which had flagged up the problem. Having restored the space, Generali entrusted its conservation and enhancement to FAI in 2011.
Tuesday to Sunday: 10am – 6.30 pm
Last entry: 30 minutes before the closure
Entrance charges may apply.
W: Negozio Olivetti