The project


The Lazzaretti Veneziani project is promoted by two associations: Ekos Club and the Venice Chapter of the Archeoclub d’Italia. The project headquarters are on the island of Lazzaretto Nuovo, in the northern part of the Venice Laguna, the only one of the lesser islands of the Venetian archipelago to have been rescued from neglect and returned to the enjoyment of the general public thanks to a no-profit initiative.

Today, the island is an ecomuseum dedicated to the local territory and its communities: projects and management are driven by the dedication and knowledge of hundreds of enthusiasts and volunteers, in collaboration with institutions and dozens of local, national and international organizations. Every year, thousands of people from all over the world participate actively, in person and online.

For more than a thousand years, the island has been an engine and experimental outpost for Venice: the city, the Laguna and its islands. A meeting and exchange point, generating research and innovation, promoting social cohesion and cultural valorization.

  • The islands of Lazzaretto Vecchio and Lazzaretto Nuovo were the first two lazzarettiin the world: they were Venice’s sanitary doorstep, places of global exchange, diplomacy and intelligence.
  • The Path of the Barene illustrates the extraordinary laguna ecosystem and landscape, at risk of disappearing, and the balance between man, the environment and climate change.
  • The Biblioteca delle Isole [Library of the Islands] is the learning and research center addressing the various topics and activities of the ecomuseum.
  • The project develops and supports numerous interventions and organizations in the local area, targeting the tutelage, study and sharing of its historical, environmental and anthropological heritage (archeology, architecture, restoration, nature, artisanal and seafaring traditions, urban studies, agriculture, publishing…).

After it was decommissioned, in the past 45 years ownership of the Lazzaretto Nuovo has passed through many hands (at first it was national property, recently ownership passed to the Municipality of Venice): neglect and vandalism was halted and a project for the rebirth of the island was begun and continued, as the island was protected and kept under surveillance, thanks to the unflagging dedication of the two associations currently holding the concession. The valorization of the asset led the Ministry of Cultural and Environmental Affairs to recognize the Lazzaretto Nuovo in 1985 as being of particular interest as per Law n. 1089 of 1 June 1939; to its being chosen, in 1997, as the site of the Deposit for archeological materials originating from the laguna of the Authority for Archeology, Fine Arts and Landscape; and in 2001 to the signing of a memorandum of understanding that included, along with responsibility for the protection of the cultural heritage, responsibility for archeological excavations and numerous other shared activities. This unique nature of the participatory ecomuseum project, as well as the presence and efforts of the two associations, have been able to attract and contribute to public and private funding amounting to several million Euro. 

Strumenti redazionali e contenuto evoluto

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