© Condé Nast / Photo: Marco Cappelletti

Next to his stellar Bourse de Commerce flagship museum, a venue we’ve talked about in a previous post, Kering frontman François-Henri Pinault has acquired majority stakes in Punta della Dogana and Palazzo Grassi, two historic landmark buildings in the city of Venice. After all, the Frenchman needs a bit of space where to show off his vast collection of trophies by some of the planet’s leading artists. The latter venue, an 18th century Neoclassical gem smack on the scenic Canal Grande, has just inaugurated an alluring exhibition on its grand premises. Pinault acquired a large swath of publishing house Condé Nast‘s vast archives in 2021, and yes, you guessed it, it’s now put on display in a most splendorous setting.

Entitled, Chronorama. Photographic Treasures of the 20th Century, the exhibition presents a selection of no less than 407 works from between 1910 and 1979. Mind you, some of these works are shown to the public for the very first time. Curated by Matthieu Humery, photography advisor for the Pinault Collection, the elaborate showcase represents both the passing of time and the images that remain of it by bringing together the work of more than 150 leading artists from across the planet, including Edward Steichen, Berenice Abbott, Cecil Beaton, Lee Miller, André Kertész, Horst P. Horst, Diane Arbus, Irving Penn, and Helmut Newton, as well as the illustrators Eduardo Benito, Helen Dryden, and George Wolfe Plank.

Among the top talents of their generation, they’ve shaped the photographic and artistic aesthetics of their time through the publication of their work in the various Condé Nast publications, including Vogue, Vanity Fair, House & Garden, Glamour and GQ. Portraits of famous actors and actresses and important figures of the 20th century are interspersed with fashion photography, photojournalism, photographs of architecture, still lifes, and documentary photography. Running alongside the exhibition is Chronorama Redux, an installation set across four spaces within Palazzo Grassi which serves as an interlude in the chronological tour of the show. The installation offers a contemporary look at the main show’s works through the work of four artists: Tarrah Krajnak, Eric N. Mack, Giulia Andreani, and Daniel Spivakov (on through Jan 7).

Palazzo Grassi
Campo San Samuele 3231 (San Marco)
30124 Venice
Telephone: +39 041 2401308
Wed-Sun 10am-7pm

© Condé Nast / Photo: Marco Cappelletti (settings) / Jean Howard, Marlon Brando (1951), Vogue / Eduardo Garcia Benito, Woman wearing a pink floral flapper dress (1926), Vogue / Jack Robinson, Melba Moore (1971), Vogue