- Get timed entrance tickets for the Borghese Gallery (note that tickets aren't usually available on the day - and in fact often sell out up to a month in advance)
- Among the painted highlights: Caravaggio's Saint Jerome Writing, Raphael’s Deposition and Titian's Sacred and Profane Love
- Two statues to see here: Bernini's David sculpture is a lithe, coiled, figure in mid-battle with Goliath. And the Venus Victrix is a semi-nude by Canova, who used Napolean's sister Pauline as his model
Lucio Fontana is often compared to twentieth-century modernist painters who seek formal purity by reducing painting to its bare essentials. This exhibition presents about fifty works of the artist's works in gold and ceramics which are placed between Renaissance and Baroque works. This aims to highlight the persisting relevance of a timeless problem: how do art objects interact with the temporal and structural space which they occupy?
Throughout the ages of classical art, gold was used to represent a spatial component; the Divine Light, untouched by humanity. Earth-like elements were arranged precariously, never puncturing the divine space. In this exhibition, Fontana negates gold with the element of earth (mud) to create a dialogue between the here and now through similar mediums.
The art collection of the wealthy, noble Borghese family soon became too big for a single home. It moved into the Galleria Borghese - a separate building in the famous Villa Borghese park. In 1901, the collection passed into the hands of the Italian government and ever since, tourists travel from all over the world to see this beautiful museum! Timed tickets are hard to come by, so grab yours before they're all gone!
The Borgheses were a rich and powerful Italian family who moved to Rome in the 16th century. Camillo Borghese became Pope Paul V, appointed his nephew Scipione Cardinal, and then things started really coming up Borghese.
Scipione Borghese had a brain for power and an eye for art. He was a patron of Caravaggio and Bernini, and ended up building the Galleria Borghese to house his ever-expanding collection of work from these two, and other Renaissance masters.
This small museum punches well above its weight, thanks to the lush surroundings (pink marble walls, frescoed ceilings, etc.) and the hit rate of masterpieces. Plus, thanks to the timed entrance policy, it gets busy but never crowded.
Artistic highlights include Bernini's sculpture of David which captures the biblical hero coiled in a state of readiness, and The Rape of Proserpina - done when Bernini was just 23. Other highlights include Caravaggio's Boy with Fruit Basket and Raphael's extraordinary Deposition of Christ and Lady with a Unicorn.
A visit here is a trip into the rarefied air of Renaissance highlife and a chance to commune with artistic masterpieces from Renaissance masters.
- Swap your smartphone voucher for a paper ticket at the ticket office inside the museum, downstairs from the street
- Please be there 15 minutes before your reserved timeslot
- Cancellations are not possible for this ticket
- Changes are not possible for this ticket
You can take either the bus 116 and get off at Galleria Borghese, or 910 (from Termini Station) and get off at Pinciana/Museo Borghese.
After your visit, wander the Villa Borghese; it offers peaceful walks, bike or segway tours, a wonderful view of Rome from the Pincio terrace and a romantic boat trip through its little lake.