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Galleria Spada, Rome

3.6
#31 of 150 in Museums in Rome
The Galleria Spada is a museum in Rome (Italy), which is housed in the Palazzo Spada of the same name, located in the Piazza Capo di Ferro. The palazzo is also famous for its façade and for the forced perspective gallery by Francesco Borromini.The gallery exhibits paintings from the 16th and 17th century.The MuseumMuseum Cabe-Cabean "CI." A State Museum, the Galleria Spada's run by the Polo Museale del Lazio.Hours of OperationThe Museum hours of operation are as follows: Tuesday - Saturday, 9:00 a.m. to 7:00 p.m. Sundays and holidays from 9:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.HistoryIt was originally built in 1540 for Cardinal Girolamo Capodiferro. Bartolomeo Baronino, of Casale Monferrato, was the architect, while Giulio Mazzoni and a team provided lavish stuccowork inside and out. The palazzo was purchased by Cardinal Spada in 1632. He commissioned the Baroque architect Francesco Borromini to modify it for him, and it was Borromini who created the masterpiece of forced perspective optical illusion in the arcaded courtyard, in which diminishing rows of columns and a rising floor create the visual illusion of a gallery 37 meters long (it is 8 meters) with a lifesize sculpture at the end of the vista, in daylight beyond: the sculpture is 60 cm high. Borromini was aided in his perspective trick by a mathematician. The building was purchased in November 1926 by the Italian State to house the gallery and the State Council. The Galleria was opened in 1927 in the Palazzo Spada. It closed during the 1940s, but reopened in 1951 thanks to the efforts of the Conservator of the Galleries of Rome, Anchille Bertini Calosso and the Director, Frederico Zeri. Zeri was committed to locating the remaining artwork that had been scattered during the war, as he intended to recreate the original layout of the 16th-17th version of the gallery, including the placement of the pictures, the furniture and the sculptures. Most of the exhibited artwork comes predominantly from the private collection of Bernardino Spada, supplemented by smaller collections such as that of Virgilio Spada.
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Galleria Spada Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 3.5
275 reviews
Google
4.4
TripAdvisor
  • A visit to the Galleria Borromini's perspective is a masterpiece of Roman Baroque, which is why already just to see it worth paying 5 euros for the ticket. Although it can see through the window of the library on the ground floor without paying the ticket. On this visit, you can also see the small gallery of the Sword on the upper floor. Unfortunately the Museum display of this picture gallery belonging to the family of Cardinal Spada was like centuries ago ... all together without order to cover the walls. Also instead of brochures there are copies bound in every room with little explanation (work title date and name of the author for each painting and element of the room). Surely both the lack of cheap funds from the Ministry or the Government, but it is very sad not to be able to enjoy an art gallery with works by important authors because there are no brochures made as you should! Luckily the galleria Borromini repays widely all expectations!
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  • A path that encompasses four halls: within these wonderful masterpieces are preserved. In particular the caravaggeschi as Artemisia Gentileschi; artists like Guercino and Titian. And last but not least the formidable pretend Borromini's perspective.
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  • The museum itself is small and nice - interesting to a certain extent - and yes, once you're in Rome, one gets of course easily spoiled after the enormous amount of art collections and paintings in al...  more »
Google
  • Very small art gallery with lots of historic paintings! The courtyard is small but lovely and it has a very interesting sculpture!
  • A good art collection. Some rare pieces. The most interesting is perhaps the way the paintings were exhibited, style of 15 and 16 th centuries. Quite different from how we would do it today. Small gallery, only for rooms, can be done in an hour our so. The false collonade outside is amazing and free to visit.
  • Beautiful paintings, in beautiful museum. Don't miss the optical illusion from Francesco Borromini.
  • Don't miss this jewel of the Italian Baroque in Rome. The Spada put together a very peculiar arts collection which is still on exhibit today as it was 400 years ago. Discover the trompe-l'oeuil created by Borromini.
  • 4 halls nicely hung and lit with plenty of priceless masters work. Nice!
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