Ville Repeta

at Campiglia dei Berici

Repeta VillaOne of the more expressive examples of the relationship between the ideal and the aspirations of the commissioners and the architects' choices is offered by the two villas of Repeta, nobles of Vicenza, at Campiglia dei Berici. Of the  first, planned  by Andrea Palladio for Mario Repeta (who wanted with this villa to dignify the  memory of his father Francesco, an aristocratic humanist), unfortunately there isn't trace. The only evidence is in the treatise "I Quattro Libri dell'Architettura". Original is the plan with only one floor: the building appears like a long portico that on three sides contains a vast courtyard. No ornamental element distinguishes the main building from those destined to the agricultural activity. Curiously, the classical pediment (that usually dignified the façades of villas) here dominates the passage from the courtyard to the fields. So the villa of Mario Repeta is expression of original way of life in which join equalitarian ideals of evident Lutheran matrix (because of which against Mario will presented in the 1569 an anonymous accusation) and the ellenic culture of Giangiorgio Trissino's circle.
Repeta Villa - back Here, then, the refusal of each hierarchical order, of each discrimination between aristocrats and "peasants", and here a building scanned by columns like the agorà, homesick memory of the calm and harmonious world of the Greek and, like the "House of the Greek" described by Palladio, open and hospitable. In this way were also the frescoes by Giambattista Maganza il Vecchio that had to adorn the inside walls of the villa celebrating Virtues; so the owner can "alloggiare i suoi forestieri et amici nella camera di quella virtù, alla quale essi gli parranno haver più inclinato l'animo". It was an utopia, a plan that mirrored the ideal of a refined humanist in odour of heresy but totally incomprehensible to the successors. Completely different will, in fact, the villa built in 1672 (still observable) for Enea and Scipione Repeta and that, as commissioners said, would have been more elegant then Palladio's one because more in accordance with the aesthetic ideals of the '600. It is a closed and austere building, with a loggia only in the back façade, separated from the main street by a bottom ditch and, like wrote Muttoni in 1740, "fatto in figura marziale con baluardi negli angoli". This soldierly and feudal print was appropriated to the commissioners of the villa, that belonged to a family which until 1217 had the territory of Campiglia in feud and that, in change of the confirmation of the own feudal laws, was obliged in military loyalty to the Serenissima. A document of 1703 established, in fact, that Enea (general Sergeant of battle) and Scipione "caratterizzati col nome di Vassalli e Feudatari, saranno pronti in tempo di Guerra per il servitio militare". The new villa, then, austere, decidedly separate from the rustic buildings, flanked from a "Serraglio" destined to military exercises, becomes the mirror of the ambitions and aspirations of the feudatories of Campiglia.


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