Torlonia Collection To Be Unveiled in Rome
Big news from the eternal city! The world’s most important private collection of ancient marble sculptures will be showcased in Rome this March. The illustrious Torlonia Collection will be displayed at Palazzo Caffarelli at the city’s Capitoline Museums, located at Piazza del Campidoglio, 1. The exhibition “The Torlonia Marbles: Collecting Masterpieces” will display 96 of the anthology’s impressive 620 ancient sculptures.
Visitors to the eternal city will be able to view the collection from March 25, 2020 until January 10, 2021. The pieces were restored through a three year project financed by the luxury jewelry giant Bvlgari. This is not Bvlgari’s first time financing a restoration project in Italy. In 2015, the jeweler financed the $1.7 million renovation of the famous Spanish Steps.
Accumulated between the 15th and 19th centuries, the sizable collection is made up of bronze, alabaster and marble statues, busts, sarcophagi and bas-reliefs from the ancient Roman era. Dating from the fifth century B.C. to the fourth century A.D, the anthology features many important figures from classical mythology, Greek and Roman Gods, mythical heroes and Roman emperors.
Often referred to as the “collection of collections” of ancient Roman sculptures, the pieces will be on public display after being hidden away for nearly 70 years. Back in 1875, the Museo Torlonia was opened in Rome’s Trastevere neighborhood on Via della Lungara. During the post war period, however, access to the museum was restricted to rarely permitted visits by art experts and visiting dignitaries. Then in 1976, the 77 room palace was closed when the building was purchased to construct luxury apartments.
The ancient masterpieces were moved to the basement of the private Roman palace owned by the aristocratic Torlonia family. In spite of efforts by multiple governments to convince the Torlonia’s to display or sell the works, the priceless collection was hidden in storage for over four decades.
Finally, after years of discussions between the Torlonia Foundation and Italy’s culture minister Dario Franceschini, a portion of the collection’s most revered alabaster and marble sculptures will be exhibited. The ancient Roman masterpieces will be on public display in Rome for nearly a year before traveling abroad to other prominent museums worldwide. After continued talks with the organization that administers the Torlonia family’s assets, there are plans to secure a permanent location in Rome to display these important sculptures.
For more information, check out the official website:
Don’t miss a visit to this incredible collection during your next stay in Rome. The unveiling of these impressive works is yet another reason to visit Rome, whether its your first time or a return trip. Contact your specialized travel agency, the Italian Concierge, to start planning your dream vacation to Italy today!
*Images courtsey of: https://www.fondazionetorlonia.org/torlonia-collection