"If the world had to be catalogued by type, Venice would surely have a separate category". This is how a Nobel prize winner Joseph Brodsky synthetically defines the city in the famous book Watermark.
Nietzsche said that if he'd had to think of a synonym for music, he would have said Venice.
Anyhow, it is impossible to be indifferent towards a city that in such
violent way assails the senses and which concentrates the religious,
artistic and cultural history of Europe in few square miles of water
So, how to tackle these imposing incitements?
If you follow tourist guides, you risk to
become dizzy from a detailed engraving, such is the beauty of its
points of interest. But what counts is the unitary vision and overall
effect of this extraordinary number of details. In fact, the most
spectacular way to arrive to Venice is by plane:
before landing it is actually impossible not to admire the image of a
city in the shape of a fish that floats on the variegated and moving
expanse of the lagoon and gets squeezed in by a fishing line of the Bridge of Liberty which links Venice to the mainland.
Let's imagine to be a bird, a seagull that twirls in the basin of San Marco.
Well then, we'd live an experience of such richness of art and
sculptural decorations, absolutely unique in the world: the domes of
the churches and Palladian eardrums of San Giorgio, le Zitelle, il Redentore, baroque volutes of La Salute, the golden sphere of La Dogana, the angel of the Bell Tower, the marching audience with its winged symbols, then there is also the impressive set of the Doge's Palace, the fine order of columns of the Basilica and the last superb director's shot of the golden quadriga of the church façade.
All in all, Venice is a summa of all the Italian and European art and it's surely the most sculpted city in the world. And still, it's all there in a street, within eyesight in a plastic continuum
made of statues, ornaments, bas-relieves, friezes, pateras, marble
icons, spires and transennas which invade every part of the city,
palaces, churches, lanes, squares, well curbs...
So, here are the suggested itineraries which form an outline of the city's arts, an overall vision and a selection of original and particular aspects, a synthetic way to go back over artistic styles using angel's wings, the evolution of architecture and sculpture through centuries, the itineraries for one Venice as seen by writers or to be seen as it had been portrayed in cinema and literature. In short, one Venice which you won't find in conventional guides, for example, following a route of Tintoretto's Last suppers in some city churches or going on a trip around cloisters, in immaculate and cool silence of sacred places, little hit by masses of tourists who crowd the city all year around.