The Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna (National Gallery of Modern Art) in Rome, like the Galleria Borghese and the Etruscan Museum, is located in the Villa Borghese. It has a great permanent collection of 19th and 20th century, especially Italian art, but also hosts temporary exhibitions, often several at the same time.
Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Moderna Rome
Address, opening hours and admission
Address: Viale delle Belle Arti, 131 – Rome. Wheelchair entrance: Via Antonio Gramsci, 71. Tel.: +39 06 32298221 (information) or +39 06 32110435 (ticket office) or +39 06 322981 (switchboard). Opening hours: 08.30 till 19.30; December 24,31: 08.30 – 18.00. Closed: Mondays, January 1, May 1, December 25. Admission: 10 Euros; EU citizens age 18-25: 5 Euros; any nationality age 0-18: free. Roma Pass is valid. From October till March the Gallery admission to the museum is free on the first Sunday of the month.
The museum, which is nowhere near as famous as it should be, consists of 75 rooms with lots of art of the Neo-Classicist and Romantic periods. There is also an outstanding collection of mainly Italian Pop Art and the Italian futurists are also well represented.
The most famous Italian artists are De Chirico, Modigliani and Fontana, while foreign art is represented by painters such as Degas, Cezanne, Monet, van Gogh, Klee, Ernst, Braque, Miro, Kandinsky, Mondrian and Pollock and sculptors like Rodin and Canova.
Apart from the permanent collection, there are usually several special exhibitions at the GNAM.
Highlights permanent exhibition
The first room is dominated by Antonio Canova‘s famous masterpiece “Ercole e Lica”.
The Sala del Giardiniere includes two works by Vincent van Gogh.
Room 9 is entirely devoted to avant-garde art. The exhibition is also home to movements such as Cubism, Expressionism and Italian Futurism. There are Dutch contributions by Kees van Dongen and Mondrian.
Rooms 10 and 11 will be occupied by the Schwarz collection, donated to the museum in 1997, and will showcase Marcel Duchamps and Dadaism.
The Pittura Metafisica is an early 20th century Italian movement, with Giorgio De Chirico (room 14) as its most important exponent.
In the second part of the Galleria, dedicated to post-war art, the Sala Fontana is particularly interesting, with works by the futurist Lucio Fontana.
However, the size of this building made it necessary to evacuate the permanent exhibition each time a temporary exhibition was held. Therefore, and also because the Esposizione Internazionale di Roma was to take place in 1911, the current Palazzo delle Belle Arti was built.
In 1933 the same problem arose again and a wing was added to the museum, doubling its exhibition space.
Initially the new rooms were used for the propaganda exhibition Mostra della Rivoluzione Fascista (Exhibition of the Fascist Revolution).
A last extension of the Galleria took place in 1973, while between 1995 and 1999 the building was completely restored and the collection reorganized.
The architect of both the original building and the extension built more than 20 years later was Cesare Bazzani. Luigi Cosenza oversaw the expansion in 1973.
Over the years, often through donations, the collection expanded. As a result satellite museums were opened elsewhere in the city. The Museo Mario Praz (Via Zanardelli) and the Museo Boncompagni Ludovisi (Via Boncompagni) are among the results of this.