BERNINI’S EXHIBIT AT
GALLERIA BORGHESE, ROME
Galleria Borghese stages major exhibition about Bernini
If you happen to be in Rome for your winter holidays you shouldn’t miss it, and we warmly advise to book in advance and to arrive on time.
Be prepared to leave your handbag at the entrance. But you’re allowed to carry your camera with you! No doubt, you will certainly use it…bring extra batteries.
Almost 80 important works by the great Baroque artist shine like precious gems in the sumptuously ornate halls of the Borghese Gallery.
Every room is a new emotion, as the pieces temporarily in display have a special connection with the wall decorations and the statues and paintings of the permanent collection.
You can walk around for hours – but remember they don’t let you stay more than two! – turning around Bernini’s statues, admiring his genius at transposing movement and sentiment to the marble, obtaining incredible pictorial effects. The Stendhal syndrome is waiting for you just behind the corner.
Gian Lorenzo Bernini started hos activity when still a teen ager – his father Pietro was an accomplished and successful sculptor himself. In the first Great Hall of the Gallery you will admire some of his early works, such as the delightful and humoristic ‘Faun teased by Children’ from the Met in New York.
In the same hall you’ll be struck by the intense beauty of the freshly restored Santa Bibbiana, one of Bernini’s early religious works. The restoration was financed by the famous fashion house Fendi, who signed a three years sponsorship cooperation with the Borghese Gallery.
Fendi also sponsored transportation (some 500,000 euro) and insurance for the 70 pieces lent by several museums, such as the Louvre and the Metropolitan in New York. Considering the 9 works by Bernini in the permanent Borghese collection, the result is the most complete anthology of his production ever!
Bernini’s first enthusiastic patron was Cardinal Scipione Borghese (you’ll find him in the busts’ collection, a sort of who’s who made of marble), nephew of Pope Paul V and avid and somewhat unscrupulous art collector, who commissioned young Gian Lorenzo four memorable pieces, still in the Gallery collection.
You will stand in awe and surprise in front of the Apollon and Daphne, a work that requires some time to reveal all its secrets, you will startle at the powerful and sensual Rape of Proserpina, where marble looks like flesh, and at the foot of Aeneas and Anchises, that he sculpted at the age of 20!
A room is dedicated to the Sleeping Hermaphrodite, arriving from the Louvre, an ancient statue that Bernini restored for Cardinal Scipione in 1620. With incredible skills he crafted a marble bed that really looks like a soft mattress, and wrapped the reclining figure with marble sheets that seem totally real…
On the steps of Michelangelo, also Bernini wanted to be an all-around artist and, besides his universally renown sculptures and architectures, he also painted a small number of portraits and self-portraits which are present at the exhibition. He was also an accomplished scenographer and a playwright.
Once you’ve seen the exhibition, well it is just as a starter, as Rome is the city of Bernini, and would not be the same without his works! From St Peter to Piazza Navona, to the Elephant and Obelisk at Piazza della Minerva, not to say about the mythical Transverberation of Santa Teresa at Santa Maria della Vittoria.
Tuesday to Sunday from 09.00 to 19.00 (last admission 17.00)
From November 1st 2017 until February 4th, 2018