Historical Background

The Villa was built in the centre of the little town and defended all around by a high, crenellated wall that runs all around. It dates back to the second half of the 17th century , but it may be older. In 1811 it was owned by the Redolfi, landowners of Trivignano, described as "house with court", at the time it was very different from today.

In 1821 Francesco Redolfi sold the whole property to the Venetian nobleman Domenico Rubini, from an ancient patrician family who had settled in Friuli in the middle of the 18th century. They owned mills and traded in precious silk fabrics that exported to Vienna. Domenico started the expansion of the whole complex, beautifying the villa according to the aesthetic and architectural dictates of the Venetian Villas established by Palladio in the 16th century. The main facade of the edifice bears neo-classical features. The Doric pilasters framing the central body, the pediment with central rose window crowned by three beautiful statues, the stone staircase with a double ramp that leads to the first floor, are all elements that recall both the Palladian and the Neoclassical. The central hall is in the Empire style, the so-called second phase of Neoclassicism that flourished between 1804 and 1814 and spread throughout Europe and America. It is adorned by elegant Ionic columns and a fine statue of a woman, probably from the "workshop" of Canova. On both sides of the hall, doorways lead to the lounges and dining room, all enriched with precious Murano chandeliers and original pieces of furniture.

Domenico also expanded the cellars and the farm buildings, barchesse, for the pressing of grapes and winemaking, the storage of wheat and maize and the breeding of silkworms, in line with the productive purposes of the Venetian villas in the mainland. The "barchesse” were the buildings used for rural aims and had a development and an importance not inferior to those of the main building.

At the death of the Earl, in 1848, the property was divided among his four children Pietro, Carlo, Luigia e Caterina. The estate of Trivignano was inherited by Carlo, who lived permanently there with his wife Emma Forbes, a British opera singer, and their three daughters.

Carlo probably promoted new interventions mainly concerning the park. The inventory at the death of Domenico still describes an Italian Renaissance garden, located between the villa and the "orchard", with the space divided into geometric compartments shaped by boxwood hedges, framing within flowering plants, rose bushes and statues. Today, no trace remains of the original Italian garden, but the visitor can appreciate Carlo’s natural park in the English style with the pond, the small canals, avenues and little woods, all elements that identify it as a romantic landscape garden in the style of the late 19th century.

The Rubini family’s ties suggest an intervention of the architect Andrea Scala in the design of the park. In 1843 Luisa, Carlo’s sister, married Gian Battista Scala, brother of the famous architect Andrea, who later worked in several projects of the family, such as the garden and park of Villa Rubini at Spessa di Cividale owned by Pietro, the garden of the residence of Gabriele Pecile in Udine, husband of his sister Caterina, and the “barchesse” of the the villa Costantini Scala in Mereto di Capitolo.

After Carlos’s death, the estate passed to his eldest daughter Marion, who gave her name to the villa for a few years. After a period of well-being still tied to the land rents and the breeding of silkworms, the outbreak of the First World War marked a setback. Trivignano was right behind the lines of the war and the villa was used as a military hospital. In 1954 Elodia Orgnani Martina bought the property, which is still run by the heirs.