May 02, 2012

Giuseppe Toselli, Casa Bepi Suá

pictures (2010) courtesy of Paolo's, Flickr

Burano is one of the small islands in the Venetian lagoon, well known for its coloured houses. According to Wikipedia a homeowner will send a request to the local authorities, who will answer denoting the specific colour which is permitted for the relevant house. I wonder if Giuseppe Toselli (1920-2002) has followed this procedure.

Life and work

Born in Burano, Toselli first was a candy seller, which may have given him the nickname Bepi Suá (sweet Bepi?). Later -in the 1940's- he became a film operator in the local Cinema Favin

When the cinema had to close, Toselli became the owner of the projection equipment. He was a great lover of films and arranged open air film screenings for children in front of his house

In the 1950's, following a passion he already had when young, Toselli began decorating the facade of his house with geometric patterns in various brightful colours. It is possible the interior has been decorated too, but I did not come along credible reports about this.

Although Toselli's creative way of painting differs completely from the usual monochromatic colour scheme in Burano, I couldn't trace any reports indicating that the authorities objected to his way of acting. Perhaps they appreciated the project as a contribution to the promotion of tourism, which it certainly has done.   .    

Fallen ill in the late 1990's, Giuseppe Toselli died in 2002. Some years later the house was bought by Mara Bon, owner of a local shop, who from childhood knew and loved the decorated house.

Mara Bon has ensured that the facade, which had become somewhat neglected, has been restored into its original condition.

Documentation/more pictures 
* official website
* article in local newspaper La Nuova di Venezia e Mestre (may 2013)
* lots of pictures of the facade on Flickrhivemind
* video by Iris film produzioni (You Tube, 1'31", uploaded april 2012)

Casa Bepi Suá
via al Gottolo 339
Burano, Venezia, Veneto, Italy
can be seen from the street

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