Dear amici/amiche of Pratt in Venice,
2019 is a special year as it will be the 35th Pratt in Venice program! We are presently planning some celebrations and will keep you posted.
As tuition rates increase, it is especially challenging for many extremely well qualified Pratt in Venice applicants to afford the program. I am speaking of students in various programs within art history, fine arts, preservation, design, and architecture who are serious about wishing to participate.
As students ask me about Pratt in Venice 2019, many of their questions center on cost and the availability of substantial scholarship help. In past years, through your generosity, we have been able to give awards of $2,000 or $3,000 to outstanding scholarship applicants. Such students have been highly committed, productive participants on site. We need to be even more generous in the coming year.
To bring you up to date: 2018 was an impressive year, with twenty-one graduate and undergraduate students from a wide range of disciplines. With a nice balance of participants’ interests, it proved a highly gifted, productive, and compatible group.
Early on, Joe Kopta led visits to Torcello and Ravenna. My Materials and Techniques group visited the mosaic restoration laboratory in the Basilica of San Marco and the mosaic-making firm of Orsoni, where we saw the once-secret making of gold tesserae. Students in Michael Brennan’s studios at UIA and Andrea Santos’ at the Scuola Grafica fell to work, responding to the beauties of the place in line and color. On the Padua day-trip, architectural preservationist Antonio Stevan again hosted our full hour in the Giotto Chapel which, now featuring a new lighting system, inspired awe. Our villa trip succeeded in visiting Giorgione’s town of Castelfranco and two frescoed Palladian villas. The ample rustic meal provided by Gigi and Luisa in the hills above Bassano was followed by sketching and watercolor on site, before our traditional walk across Palladio’s bridge, and through the town of Bassano.
Additional art historical events included our Peggy Guggenheim Collection visit, led by Andrew Kurczak (alumnus, former Venice program assistant, and Guggenheim intern), and our San Sebastiano visit, where we learned of new revelations from conservators (beyond those reported in my book of 2017), as well as special viewing of conservation of Tintoretto and Carpaccio. During our visit to Santa Maria della Salute, we were delighted to be joined by alumna and past program assistant, Monique Rollins. Monique is a successful painter, living in Tuscany, and recently has had exhibitions in Delaware, London, Beijing and Venice! She has agreed to lead plans for the 35th!
The final critique and presentations in Venice and the Pratt in Venice show in October on campus demonstrated the range and quality of work produced in 2018. Do take a look at prattinvenice.com for more details and pictures contributed by all, both on site and at the fall exhibition!
I look forward to being in touch with you very soon. We need to embrace the good things in life.
Director of Pratt in Venice
Professor of Art History