Bernini at Galleria Borghese

Bernini's sculptures and paintings in Rome's Galleria Borghese

Bernini’s artworks to celebrate 20 years of Galleria Borghese

This exhibition is a unique once-in-a-lifetime journey into the world of one of the most universal artists of all time, Gian Lorenzo Bernini.

The artistic genius is known for having greatly contributed in making Rome the Eternal City. And while Galleria Borghese has always had nine of Bernini’s most famous masterpieces (five of which cannot be moved), this exhibition gives a “full-length” portrait of the great sculptor.


Truth Unveiled by Time
Apollo_&_Daphne_bernini_galleria borghese
Apollo & Daphne

Curated by Andrea Bacchi and Anna Coliva, and in collaboration with renowned scholars and specialists, the exhibition is a continuation of the “Bernini Scultore” show of 1998, featuring 80 artworks, of which 71 coming from museums worldwide.

Subdivided into 8 subsections, the exhibition – which celebrates 20 years since the museum’s reopening – allows visitors to float from one room to the next, discovering all of Bernini’s talents.

Bernini's sculptures and paintings in Rome's Galleria Borghese
Autoritratto giovanile, Bernini, Ministero dei Beni e delle Attività Culturali e del Turismo – Galleria Borghese

The journey begins with the marble statues Bernini executed with his father, Pietro, and finishes with the last terracotta and bronze statues that were touched by his chisel, putting Bernini and his sculptures under the spotlight.

But it’s not just about the sculptures; on the second floor there is a whole section dedicated to Bernini’s paintings. And one artwork, which was not present in the 1998 exhibition, is present this time: I santi Andrea e Tommaso apostoli from London’s National Gallery, a key artwork in understanding Bernini as a painter.

Bernini's sculptures and paintings in Rome's Galleria Borghese
Gian Lorenzo Bernini e bottega Fontana dei Quattro Fiumi

On the second floor of the Gallery, you will also find the “models” of the Fountain of the Four Rivers of Piazza Navona. The model in bronze comes from the Royal Palace of Madrid while the one in wood from the Academy of Fine Arts of Bologna.

Bernini's sculptures and paintings in Rome's Galleria Borghese
Ratto di Proserpina, G. L. Bernini

As you move from one section to the other, marvel at Bernini’s details. A particular artwork to set your eyes on is Ratto di Proserpina, where the hands of the God touching Proserpina’s skin actually seem as if they are sinking into her flesh. And don’t forget to admire at length the restored Santa Bibiana statue, on display for the very first time outside the Esquilino church.

Like anything that has been made in partnership with Fendi, the Bernini exhibition is breathtaking and ambitious. It’s a must visit.

Click here to find out where you can find Bernini’s works in Rome

Till 20 February 2018

Galleria Borghese

Piazzale Museo Borghese, 5

Tue–Sun: 9am–7pm. Monday Closed

Reservation required (€2)

Entry fee €13.50 – €20 (+ €2 reservation)

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