Hidden treasures

The Mexico Pavilion at the Venice Biennale

Unknown places & works

The Mexico Pavilion at the Venice Biennale

Each edition of the Art Biennial in Venice is an event of great importance for all those who love contemporary art. But it is also a unique opportunity because often countries that are not housed at the Giardini often create their own pavilions inside monuments of Venice otherwise closed to the public.

And this is the case of Mexico, which obtained permission from the city of Venice to have a unique location as a permanent home for future Art and Architecture Biennials for the next 9 years. In return Mexico will restore the church of San Lorenzo in Castello which is in a state of serious neglect.

The church of San Lorenzo - with an adjoining convent - was actually founded in the 9th century by the family of the Doge Partecipazio. It was rebuilt in the 11th century and acquired its present appearance at the end of the 1500s. In 1810, during the Napoleonic government, the monastery was suppressed and reduced to a ‘House of Industry', a rehabilitation home with an adjoining factory. It later became a home for the elderly, which continues today. The church, however, was run by the Dominicans until 1867 when a law on religious orders forced them to move out. Officiations continued until 1920, when the church was finally deconsecrated.

The church is famous for its marble altar, by Girolamo Campagna, which is considered the largest altar in the world.

By Insidecom Editorial Staff

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