Remembering Helenio

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Me and Fiora at Hotel Ungaria on Lido

Fiora Gandolfi Herrera, an iconoclastic Venetian, sent me this video where she shares memories of her late husband, the soccer star Helenio Herrera.

20 Years without Helenio Herrera

I met Fiora a few years ago when she showed up at a book signing event I was doing in Venice. She fills a room with her charismatic presence. On a subsequent trip, she invited me and artist Manuel Carrión to her palazzo for a visit. Here are a few photos of her eclectic interior. I had not shared them previously to honor her privacy, but since the video was filmed in her apartment and shows the same rooms, I feel free to include them here. She is a designer, artist, writer, and supporter of the arts. Fiora actually sculpted a beautiful round plaque that she and Manuel had hoped to hang at Casanova locations around Venice, though they couldn’t get permission from the city to do so.

The day Manuel and I visited her, Fiora served us macedonia in glass cups at her colorful table. A neighbor came by with her daughter who adores Fiora and wanted to spend time with her. Fiora did not want to let us leave–she kept showing me clothing, fabrics, writings, and artwork, including her chair that had become a phone book. We visited the secret attic room, a deep red boudoir, and saw her collection of hand-painted dishes. How lucky I was to get a glimpse into her unique home!

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Helenio and Fiora, from Getty Images

About seductivevenice

Teacher, writer, traveler, dancer, reader, photographer, gardener.
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