Ticket Booth and Venezuela Pavilion at the Biennale: Art in Architecture

Experiencing Art


Scarpa collaborated with the Biennale for over 20 years offering us a glimpse into his contribution in the history of museums and the study of the display of art objects. In the Giardini, Scarpa revolutionised the concept of a ticket booth as a place of passage, reimagining the entrance as a unique sculptural piece. Created in 1951 and appearing to lift off from the ground, the structure was conceived to be easily disassembled and is in contrast to the imposing Venezuelan Pavilion located a few steps away. The structure stands out from its neighbouring pavilions and is one of the few freestanding buildings built by Scarpa – a place which, upon visiting, we lose all sense of depth and size.

The expert’s voice: Orietta Lanzarini, from DIUM (Dipartimento di Studi Umanistici e del Patrimonio Culturale) – Udine University, was part of the team who researched the over 20,000 drawings in the Carlo Scarpa Archive. She is the author of: Carlo Scarpa. L’architetto e le arti. Gli anni della Biennale di Venezia 1948-1972, Marsilio, Venezia 2003.

What does Scarpa’s work mean to you?

Scarpa’s practice is based on the relationship between different fields of study such as architecture, art, literature, and poetry. This specific research is one of the most challenging of the 20th century: analysing his architecture – has been – and remains to this day, as stimulating and thought-provoking.

How was Scarpa inspired by painting for the Ticket Booth?

The almond-shaped base of the ticket booth is inspired by a painting by Russian artist Wassily Kandinsky where green forms overlap and coexist. Scarpa turns Kandinsky’s painted shapes into real three-dimensional architectural objects as seen in the round shape of the cabin booth and the roof resembling the shape of a leaf. This is a unique way of working with architecture.