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“Off the Skins”, an exhibition in Venice to celebrate 60 years of Santa Margherita’s Pinot Grigio

The temporary exhibition, realized with Ied of Venice and curated by Current, is a tribute to Count Gaetano Marzotto’s enological revolution

A story in images that traces the 60 years that have accompanied the success story of Santa Margherita’s Pinot Grigio, celebrating the past with an eye to the future, through the facts and events, styles and fashions that have marked the history from the sixties to the present day, retraced and graphically interpreted by the young designers of the European Institute of Design, called by Santa Margherita to create a series of iconic and evocative illustrations of the first six decades of success of the iconic wine. Here is “Off the Skins”, the exhibition that, from today to July 4, in the frame of the Cloisters of San Francesco della Vigna, in Venice, celebrates the first sixty years of the Pinot Grigio Santa Margherita, a group now led by CEO Beniamino Garofalo.

The temporary exhibition, realized in collaboration with the young students of Ied in Venice and curated by Current, is a tribute to the unprecedented and revolutionary technique of vinification “in white” of Pinot Grigio grapes, which allowed Count Gaetano Marzotto and his team of oenologists to transform a copper-skinned grape into a brilliant white wine, unique in its kind, which made its debut on the market in 1961, exactly sixty years ago.

The language of the installation is composed of suspended volumes in fabric, recalling papyri and parchments, in perfect coherence with the precious manuals conserved in the Library of the Convent of San Francesco della Vigna and evoking memory and contact with the terroir and the world of ideas, or rather the farsighted vision of Count Gaetano Marzotto. The fourteen series of illustrative works created by the young designers are accompanied by a didactic apparatus that recounts the main stages that have marked the extraordinary evolution of this wine, along with the passage of history at the turn of the century. To guide the visitor through the experience, the citrusy, clean and fresh notes typical of Pinot Grigio Santa Margherita, followed by the sweet and appetizing notes of white pulp fruits, perceptible in the glass as well as in the cloisters of San Francesco della Vigna.

Immersed in the spiritual atmosphere of the Convent, visitors will be accompanied by a musical composition created for the occasion by sound artist Yilin Zhu, inspired to the sounds of fermentation, processing, bottling and the subtle and almost inaudible sound of wine poured in the glass.

The choice of the location, moreover, is not random: the oldest urban vineyard in Venice dates back to San Francesco della Vigna. In fact, the complex of San Francesco della Vigna hosts the convent of the Friars Minor, the Institute of Ecumenical Studies, the Library - which preserves and catalogs the Venetian book heritage of the S. Antonio Province of the Friars Minor - and three cloisters, one of which is dedicated to the cultivation of aromatic herbs, one to the collection of rainwater for irrigation and one to the vineyard, which from 2019 is personally cared for by the agronomists of Santa Margherita.

“The recovery of urban vineyards is one of the most important initiatives that the world of wine can, and must, do today to maintain a strong and alive link with its history and traditions. It is a source of great pride for Santa Margherita to be able to intervene for the protection of the historical and architectural heritage of the San Francesco della Vigna complex and to transfer the technical skills of our team of enologists in order to give back splendor to this urban vineyard. A little less than a century ago, my grandfather, Count Gaetano Marzotto, chose the Venetian hinterland to start a real revolution in Italian agribusiness”, says Gaetano Marzotto, president of Santa Margherita Gruppo Vinicolo.

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