Arts in Venice Summer School 
The shape of water

Arts in Venice Summer School: The shape of water, is the first example of an inter-university summer school in Venice.

Conceived within Study in Venice, a project that brings together the four main higher education institutions in Venice - the Venice Academy of Fine Arts, the Benedetto Marcello Music Conservatory, Ca' Foscari University and Iuav University of Venice - the summer school aims to welcome diverse students from all over the world who wish to experience Venice together in order to draw inspiration from it and build an original narrative vision of the lagoon city.

Find more information in the Call for Applications: link.

Programme overview

Venice is a gauge whereby to measure the problems involved when building a global future capable of combining liveability and beauty and the relevant solutions, which is why Study in Venice has chosen to offer a Summer School centred on the lagoon city.

As a candidate for World Capital of Sustainability, Venice boasts a unique artistic, musical and urban heritage and a major international role as a centre for the promotion and dissemination of contemporary art and culture.

Its dimension as a globally interconnected microcosm, the complexity of the lagoon ecosystem – which is threatened by climate change –, the socio-economic problems linked to tourist flows and their impact on urban liveability, and above all its 'liquid' nature as a city founded on and influenced by water, make the city of Venice a fascinating case study that offers those who live there and study it the measure of the paradoxes and contemporary difficulties inherent in the search for cultural, ecological and social models.

The project: multidisciplinarity, workshops and international atmosphere

THE SHAPE OF WATER is an experimental, multidisciplinary training project that aims at welcoming diverse students from all over the world who wish to experience Venice together in order to draw inspiration from it and build an original narrative vision of the lagoon city.

The students will be guided by professors from the four partner institutions on a journey combining the hands-on exploration of the city with guided tours and university lectures on Archaeology, Architecture, Art and Music History, Performing Arts and Environmental Science.

The Summer School will be curated by Giorgio Andreotta Calò (Venice, 1979), an artist who combines great international experience with a profound knowledge of the city. The 'Souvenise' programme designed by Andreotta Calò for the Summer School sees the city of Venice as a privileged observatory from which to try to understand the changes that are taking place on a macroscopic scale. The focus of the investigation will be water, which, with its cadenced variations in level dictated by tides, is the element that most characterises the territory, thereby governing its flows and most manifest phenomena.

The practice of walking, which is a fundamental element in the artist's research, will become an instrument for exploring the city and its immediate surroundings. During the planned collective walks, the students will be invited to collaborate actively through visual, tactile and sound practices and exercises. Said practices will be useful in informing the students’ own unprecedented vision of the city, regardless of the trajectories defined by mass tourism, which often does not take into account the complexity and fragility that characterise this place.

The final part of the workshop will enable the participants to synthesise their experiences in the field and the theoretical courses into an intensive workshop that will see them create a 'souvenir' based on a project or a music text, which will represent their personal experience of the city and its ecosystem, including artistic performances. The materials collected during the workshop will thus be studied with the intention of transforming and overturning the rationale underlying souvenirs, that is, objects symbolic of the city and the tourist monoculture that defines it in the eyes of the world.

The experience of the Summer School will be compiled in video/sound recordings that will document the two weeks of research on Venice.

For a more detailed programme, check out the Study in Venice website: link.


The programme will be held over 2 weeks and combines lectures with field trips around the city of Venice each week.

Program dates: July 3rd-14th, 2023

Teaching Committee

  • Cecilia Franchini (Benedetto Marcello Music Conservatory)
  • Stefano Riccioni (Ca' Foscari University of Venice)
  • Giuliano Sergio (Academy of Fine Arts of Venice)
  • Angela Vettese (Iuav University of Venice)

Artistic Director: Giorgio Andreotta Calò
Programme Director: Stefano Riccioni


All lessons and activities will take place in the four institutions and around the city.


Applicants must have regularly enrolled at any University/Academy/Music Conservatory for the 2022/23 academic year in undergraduate, postgraduate or PhD programmes.

Fees and applications


Fees for the full 2 weeks cost €700. 

Withdrawal Policy

Following enrolment confirmation, students can withdraw from the programme with partial reimbursement up until May 31st. The School will deduct 30% from the enrolment fee for administration purposes. Following May 31st, students who withdraw are not eligible for reimbursement.


Applications are now closed.

For all details, please read the Call for applications.


Accommodation is available at two University student residences in Venice's city centre on request. For more information on policies and how to reserve rooms, please contact the residences directly via email specifying you will be a Summer School student at our university.

  • €50 shared accommodation in a double room (private bathroom + kitchenette)
  • €70 accommodation in a single room (private bathroom + kitchenette) - subject to availability

The residence also has a fitness room and a laundry room. Contact: (please ensure you specify the name of the Summer School)

Visit their website: link.

  • Including breakfast:

    • €57 shared accommodation in a double room (private bathroom)
    • €72 accommodation in a single room (private bathroom)

  • Without breakfast:

    • €45 shared accommodation in a double room (private bathroom)
    • €65 accommodation in a single room (private bathroom)

 Contact: (please ensure you specify the name of the Summer School)

Visit their website here: link.



Last update: 22/11/2023