In 1984, when the ancient art of papier-mâché Venetian masks seemed to have disappeared – but the Venetian Carnival was being relaunched – Davide Belloni and Antonella Masnata, husband and wife, decided to try and recover the traditional techniques. In 1986, they founded Ca’ Macana, producing and selling handmade masks, with the assistance of their carefully trained team. Nowadays, their son Davide works with them, taking this craft into the 21st century with great style and vision. Ca’ Macana has collaborated with movie productions (for example, Eyes Wide Shut by Stanley Kubrick) and theatres.
Their collection ranges from classic Venetian masks (such as “moretta” and “bauta” reproduced from paintings by Pietro Longhi and Francesco Guardi) and the series of Commedia dell’Arte, to unique contemporary pieces, always using the “ancient technique”. A plaster mould made after a sculpted clay model is filled with multiple layers of a special blotting paper imbued with water and glue. When it’s dry, the mask is covered with white acrylic paint and then decorated. Ca’ Macana offers lectures and courses for schools and people of all ages.