`` If you don't break the rules every so often you'll never transcend them``, Bernini
Immerse yourself in the breathtaking beauty of one of the world’s most exquisite art collections at the Borghese Gallery in Rome. With our guided tour, you’ll have the chance to discover the many treasures that this incredible museum has to offer.
The collection originally began with Cardinal Scipione Borghese, who was an obsessive collector and assembled works by Bernini, Caravaggio, Titian and many others.
An extremely passionate art lover, Cardinal Scipione even went as far as to have someone remove Raphael’s “Deposition of Christ” from its original location: a church in the city of Perugia!
This painting was commissioned by a wealthy woman from Perugia for the death of her young son Grifonetto. Raphael created a magnificent altarpiece that would honor Grifonetto in the family’s chapel. It is believed that one of the youths carrying the body of Christ is meant to depict Grifonetto, whom the painting was dedicated to.
In an exquisite location – specifically designed to house the Borghese’s art collections – among the many paintings and ancient Roman artworks on display, we will see Gianlorenzo Bernini’s statues, made for the cardinal Borghese, such as Apollo and Daphne.
The sculpture shows Daphne, who is being pursued by the god Apollo, at the moment that she begins to metamorphose into a tree in order to escape his amorous advances.
Scipione Borghese was a good patron of Caravaggio – Italian Painting favorite bad boy – and the Borghese Gallery houses six of his paintings. Therefore, on this Borghese Gallery tour, you’ll see the largest gathering of his works in a single collection, spanning the artist’s life and reflecting events that occurred during his time in Rome. You will discover the secret of his last years as a fugitive by hearing the stories behind his “David with the head of Goliath”.
One of Cardinal Scipione’s many masterpieces is Titian‘s Sacred and Profane Love. This painting is considered one of the most famous paintings of the Italian Renaissance. Rivers of ink have been written on it. It is so precious that the Rothschild family offered to pay 4 million lira for the painting when the Borghese’s entire collection was valued at only 3.6 million liras!
Another marvelous artwork at Borghese Gallery is Canova’s beautiful portrait of Paolina Bonaparte, the most beloved of Napoleon’s sisters. Paulina (who had married a member of the Borghese family) was portrayed as Venus Victorious, holding only an apple in her hand, thus giving rise to scandal, as she posed naked for the artist.
From the iconic works of Caravaggio and Bernini to the stunning sculptures and paintings from the Renaissance and Baroque periods, you’ll be able to explore a wealth of artistic styles and techniques that have shaped the history of art in a context of exceptional beauty.
For more info on the collection, please visit: https://galleriaborghese.beniculturali.it/en/
✓ All of Bernini’s sculptures (‘Apollo & Daphne’, ‘David’, the “Rape of Persephone’, ‘Aeneas and Anchises’ )
✓ Canova’s ‘Pauline Bonaparte’
✓ Raphael’s works: ‘The Deposition’ and ‘Lady with a Unicorn’
✓ Titian’s ‘Sacred and Profane Love’
✓ Domenichino’s ‘The hunt of Diana’
✓ Rubens’ ‘The Deposition’
✓ The mosaic of gladiators
Admission tickets are not included. Ticket price: Adults: 16 €; Under 18: 2 €.