Designed to be an aristocratic residence, it later became the seat of the Bishops of Torcello. Today, with the name of Palazzo Giustiniani of Murano, it is the home of the Glass Museum.
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The present building dates back to the 17th century, but its construction is based on a previous edifice dating back to the late Gothic period, as evidenced by some architectural elements such as the 15th century portico in the atrium and the windows overlooking the beautiful inner courtyard. A monumental Istrian stone façade overlooking the Fondamenta Marco Giustiniani is on the exterior. Above the windows is a large coat of arms of the Giustiniani family, surmounted by episcopal insignia.
Erected by the aristocratic family of the Giustiniani, or Giustinian in 1689, the Torcello bishop Marco Giustiniani used the place first as his own residence and then also for the other Bishops of Torcello, thus transforming the palace in episcopal seat.
The building was radically restructured at the end of the 17th century to the designs of the architect Antonio Gaspari. The ceiling of the central hall on the piano nobile dates back to this period, with the fresco by Francesco Zugno depicting the Triumph of San Lorenzo Giustiniani - the first patriarch of Venice as well as the ancestor of the family - ornamentally framed in an ornamental by Francesco Zanchi.
The episcopal diocese of Torcello physically remained in the residence until 1805, the year in which it was abolished and joined with the already existing patriarchal one of Venice. The factory remained the property of the Patriarchate until 1840, when the Municipality of Murano bought it to become its institutional headquarters. The glass Museum was established in 1861, during the Muranese municipal administration; the collection only occupied the central hall of the noble floor when it was first founded, but the collection rapidly expanded, extending the exhibition spaces, little by little, to cover the entire building.
In 1923 the Murano municipal autonomy was abolished and Murano was joined to the Municipality of Venice - the Glass Museum thus became part of the Venetian Civic Museums.