A Shoe and a Clog

As my handful of loyal readers know, I’m very possessive about Venice and get angry about the incompetence of authorities in managing the threats of sinking/ flooding/invasion by tourists etc.

Recently I learned about the first new building to be built on the Grand Canal since the Fascist era (Santa Lucia Station was the last) and Venetians have been protesting about it – too late – now that the advertising hoardings have been removed to reveal an ugly white cube totally at odds with the surrounding architecture. (‘Una scarpa e un zoccolo’ is what they say. A shoe and a clog means a mismatch, like chalk and cheese.)

A local survey gave the Venetians’ verdict: 12.3% like it, but a resounding 87.7% are against ‘The Cube’.

I decided I had to do something about it, and wrote a piece destined not this time for my usual travel magazine, but for a brave art journal called The Jackdaw which has the courage to promote high art rather than the current ‘two bus tickets and a feather’ nonsense you see everywhere.

For those who are interested, my article appears in the current edition. It won’t make any difference, but at least I feel I’ve tried.

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