Over many centuries Venice has continued to enthral & capture the imagination like no other city. Countless writers & artists have variously been charmed, inspired, unsettled & sometimes exasperated by its inimitable & contradictory blend of timelessness & transience. It is this inscrutable enigma that intrigues David Whittaker in Mindful of Venice. Taking a leisurely wander through the labyrinthine streets (accompanied by the ghost of Thomas Coryate), we learn about the astonishingly lifelike horses of San Marco, the Jewish Ghetto, the gondola, the Rialto Bridge, the notorious courtesans, the rise & fall & rise of the Campanile, the Venetian dialect, & the curious (& often alarming) deaths in Venice of notable visitors to the city. Interspersed throughout with gnomic musings, the book is also richly illustrated, mainly with David’s evocative photographs.
A notable bonus, as a coda, is the striking essay by the eminent Italian author Italo Calvino: ‘Venice: archetype & utopia of the aquatic city’ – translated into English here for the first time by Martin McLaughlin (Emeritus Professor of Italian at the University of Oxford).
Mindful of Venice emphasizes the incomparable experience of this floating city & will stimulate the eye & mind of all those who, like the author, have succumbed to the spell of this miraculous place.
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Related title: Most Glorious & Peerless Venice
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