Rome is an open-air museum with beauty and history on every corner. Sometimes, though, what’s on the inside proves equally fascinating. Head indoors to celebrate the city’s inimitable culture. Here’s the lowdown on three not-to-miss exhibitions:
Celebrating the 2,000th anniversary of the death of Rome’s greatest emperor, Augustus, the Scuderie del Quirinale has put on an exhibition to examine his life, his more than 40-year reign and the birth of the Roman Empire. On display are more than 200 statues, sculptural groupings and bas-reliefs that were borrowed from the world’s most important museums. From The British Museum’s tiny and beautiful The Blacas Cameo to the Vatican Museums’ impressive Augustus of Prima Porta, every depiction of the famous figure is outstanding. The exhibition also includes family portraiture, inscriptions and other Augustus-related art. On display until February 9.
Held in the National Roman Museum’s Palazzo Massimo, this exhibit chronicles the visual evolution of mythical beasts such as the Minotaur, the Griffin, the Hydra of Lerna and the Sphinx, as they appeared in ancient art from the Orient to the West. Set in front of a black backdrop, “Monsters” has an air of mystery, which fittingly accompanies more than 100 pieces in the form of grotesque sculptures, terra cottas, vessels and paintings depicting every kind of mythological beast imaginable. Plus, animations of scenes between the monsters and heroes will be screened in the inner courtyard, too. On display until June 1.
Get a glimpse at what the thriving 1970s art scene was like in Rome at this exhibit, which spotlights 200 works representing genres such as Arte Povera and Transavanguardia. The all-star lineup includes mid- to late-20th-century artists who worked and played in the city during this era. Look for pieces by Carla Accardi, Francesco Clemente, Joseph Kosuth, Sol LeWitt, Marisa Merz, Giuseppe Penone, Cy Twombly and Francesca Woodman. Tip: Once you’ve had your cultural fill, grab a late lunch at Open Colonna, Antonio Colonna’s airy restaurant in the Palazzo’s back terrace. On display until March 2.
Photo Courtesy of Palazzodelle Esposizioni