The Villa was built in 1669 for the lawyer Giovanni Maria Bertolo, who left it to his daughter Giulia, nun at the Padua Monastery of Ognissanti. In 1715 Giustino Valmarana bought the Villa directly from the Monastery. He enlarged the property and called the Architect Francesco Muttoni, who developed the Entrance, the Stables and the Foresteria. The particular and the architectural decorations are by Gerolamo Mengozzi Colonna. Giustino Valmarana died in June 1757 while the Tiepolos were fininshing (in only four months) the frescoes. The story tells that Giambattista, upon the news of Goiustino’s death, left immediately for Venice, fearing that the heirs were not going to be as generous as the father. But the opening of the will straightened the situation: the foresighted Giustino had left a good number of “zecchini d’oro” to honour his debt with the Tiepolos. Thus, on his deathbed, Count Giustino earned the grateful memory of his descendants and of the art lovers.


The Legend of Princess Layana

Seventeen statues of grotesque dwarves rest on the walls sorrounding the Villa. Probably inspired by the drawings of Callot, made famous by the populars prints by the Remondini printers from Bassano del Grappa, they reproduce the classic characters of the Commedia dell'Arte. Giandomenico is believed to be the author of the preparatory drawings of the sculptures.

The legend of the dwarf princess is tied to these characters: confined by her parents among the high walls of the castle with twenty dwarf servants at her services, she takes off her life once she discovers her deformity.