Italian Modernism judged against a Renaissance background
Verona’s Galleria d’Arte Moderna Achille Forti hopes to complement the older art and architecture found in renovated courts of justice
By Ermanno Rivetti. Web only
Published online: 10 April 2014
The Galleria d’Arte Moderna Achille Forti, Verona’s Modern art gallery, opens on 12 April in its new home, the Palazzo della Ragione. The €17m restoration of the massive Renaissance complex has been paid for by the Cariverona bank foundation.
The gallery brings together the botanist Achille Forti’s private collection, which he bequeathed to the city of Verona in 1937, and art from the Domus and Cariverona foundations, spanning the years 1840 to 1940. “We’re taking visitors on a journey through a tumultuous century of Italian history, both from an artistic and socio-political standpoint,” says Luca Massimo Barbero, the curator and art historian responsible for the display.
The collection, which occupies four rooms on the piano nobile of the Palazzo della Ragione, includes 150 works by painters such as Giacomo Balla, Umberto Boccioni, Filippo De Pisis and Giorgio Morandi, as well lesser-known artists with ties to the city. It also holds historic photographs of Verona’s artistic and archaeological heritage.
Barbero hopes that works from the gallery’s Modernist collection will complement the older art and architecture found in other parts of the Palazzo, which over the centuries has housed the city’s administrative offices and courts of justice. Some of the rooms have never before been open to the public, such as an early 15th-century chapel, the Cappella dei Notai, which contains a well-preserved cycle of frescos painted between the 17th and 18th centuries.
The palace’s famous outdoor staircase, the Scala della Ragione, started in 1446, has been reopened for the occasion. A single €8 ticket grants visitors access to the Galleria d’Arte Moderna Achille Forti on the first floor, the rest of the Palazzo della Ragione and the Torre dei Lamberti, a 12th-century tower.
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