More than 800 works of art of the entrepreneur’s private collection to be admired as he did every day
The late entrepreneur and collector Paolo Zani was an extremely reserved man. He led an almost secretive private life. However, in the last months of his life he worked to make sure that, after his death, the public could enjoy his incredible art collection. As for his will, the Paolo e Carolina Zani Foundation yesterday opened his house near Brescia as a museum, Casa Museo. The Foundation’s name includes also the one of Zani’s daughter, who died prematurely a year before her father.
For 30 years, Zani’s curiosity and instinct were the sole guides that oriented him in his acquisitions.
The goal of Casa Museo is to preserve the aura of a private residence, the aura of the Zani home.
The Foundation President, Claudia Zola said: “Opening this treasure trove reveals another special thing about Paolo, that he loved — he who was so reserved and shy — the splendors of the eighteenth century, elegant in France, explosive in Rome, refined in Venice.”
Zani’s exceptional collection is made of more than 800 pieces. They include paintings by Canaletto, Longhi, Tiepolo, sculptures by Parodi and Della Porta. Beside them, precious baroque and rococo furnishings as well as extraordinary applied art from the XVII and XVIII Century. All of this is presented in a catalog for which Zani himself wrote the introduction. “’Beauty is truth, truth is beauty – that is all Ye know on Earth, and all Ye need to know‘. The final words in Keats’s Ode ‘On a Grecian Urn’ that welcomes the visitor to the entrance of my Casa Museo express better than any others the spirit that has guided me.” He wrote, adding “As I have always said, ‘I won’t be there’ the day the Foundation is inaugurated, I am best represented by the works that I loved and gathered in this house.”