An exhibition of unique works of Italian art opened today at the residence of the President of the Republic of Armenia under the auspices of the Presidents of Armenia and Italy.
The four 18th-century paintings of St. Mark’s Square in Venice, donated by the Paolo and Carolina Dzani Foundation, are the works of famous masters Giovanni Antonio Canaletto, Bernardo Belotto, Francesco Guardi and Michele Marieschi.
Opening the exhibition, the President of the Republic Armen Sargsyan noted that it is a proof of the deep and close friendly and warm relations between the peoples of Armenia and Italy, both historically and today.
“We talked about the exhibition about a year ago with the President and Ambassador of the Italian Republic. The collection is here under the high patronage of the President of the Italian Republic Sergio Mattarella,” said President Sarkissian.
“The exhibition is actually reciprocal, because, according to the agreement, we will have our exhibition in Italy, the paintings will be displayed in the Palace of the President of Italy. It is expected during the planned state visit of the President of Armenia to Italy. I plan to take with me up to a dozen works by our greatest masters,” Armen Sarkissian said.
Referring to the paintings on display, President Sarkissian said “the pictures are connected with a city, which is very close to all of us. It is about Venice.”
“It is dear to us for many reasons, not only because of the Mekhitarist Congregation, but also of Armenian merchants who have been connected with Venice for centuries,” said the President.
“Until today we have a huge presence there, there is a center for Armenology at the University of Venice, many famous names are connected with Venice, Italian professors, architects, art critics who are aware of Armenian architecture and engineering, have many books and articles on these topics. Therefore, in a sense, Venice is also an Armenian city,” the President stated.
Italian Ambassador Vincenzo Del Monaco, in turn, thanked the Presidents of the two countries for the cultural initiative.
“This initiative is only the beginning, as Armenian culture will be presented in Rome soon. These four paintings are not the result of random selection, each of them has a special meaning. The four paintings represent the 18th century, which is an exceptional period for Armenian-Italian bilateral relations,” the Ambassador said.