The Axis of Time: Suzhou Silk Clothing Fabrics, Palazzo Mocenigo, Venice | Courtesy Fondazione Musei Civici di Venezia
An exhibition on the thread of memory, which evokes stories of travels, discoveries and ancient friendships whose threads have been woven for centuries on the Silk Road traveled by Marco Polo and by generations of explorers, artisans and merchants after him, The Axis of Time: Silk Garment Fabrics from Suzhou celebrates the 700th anniversary of the death of the great Venetian (9 January 1324) and belongs to a larger project that honors and renews the historical link between Venice and Suzhou (about 100 km to the West of Shanghai). The two water cities that arise at the two ends of the Silk Road have been officially twinned since 1980 and both are strongly linked to the figure of Marco Polo who, during his long journey to the East on behalf of Kublai Khan, was enchanted by Suzhou and its silk. Today, clothes, original creations, fabrics and some faithful replicas of ancient Chinese clothes arrive in Venice from the Suzhou Silk Museum, bearing witness to the legacy of a thousand-year-old weaving technique that made silk from the Jiangnan region so famous. The precious creations on display, such as Song Dynasty brocade, lampas, Kesi, silk tapestries, or the typical Suzhou embroidery, known as velvet pattern, declined here in rich examples, constitute extraordinary examples of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of China and housed at the Museum of Palazzo Mocenigo - Study Center for the History of Textiles, Costume and Perfume, symbolize profound bonds of friendship between peoples, capable of crossing space and time unscathed.