About Borghese Gallery | Explore a World of Art and Culture in the Heart of Rome

What is the Borghese Gallery?

The Borghese Gallery is a famous art gallery in Rome located on the beautiful 17th-century estate of Villa Borghese on Pincian Hill. It houses an impressive collection of paintings and sculptures by renowned artists such as Bernini, Raphael, Caravaggio, and Titian, among others. Initially, the artworks on display were from the private collection of Cardinal Scipione Borghese, and today, the gallery has become one of the top museums in Rome.

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Borghese Gallery
  • Official Name: Borghese Gallery and Museum
  • Location: Borghese Gallery and Museum, Piazzale Scipione Borghese, 5, 00197 Roma RM, Italy
  • Date of Opening: 1902
  • Timings: Tuesday to Sunday from 9 AM to 7 PM; closed on Mondays.
  • Architect: Scipione Borghese  
  • Architectural Style: Ancient Roman
  • Number of Visitors Per Year: Half a million people visit every year.
  • Collection Size: About 800 paintings.

Why is Borghese Gallery So Famous?

  • Masterpieces of art: You will come face to face with one of the most astounding collections of art in Europe.
  • Impressive architecture: The Borghese Gallery is located in a stunning 17th-century villa and features beautiful gardens.
  • Special exhibitions: The Borghese Gallery also hosts temporary exhibitions that offer a unique viewing experience.

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What's Inside Borghese Gallery

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Sculptures by Gian Lorenzo Bernini

One of the most renowned sculptors of the Baroque era. His masterpiece Apollo and Daphne is a breathtaking example of his virtuosity and captures the dramatic moment when Apollo pursues the nymph Daphne, who is transformed into a laurel tree to escape his advances. The lifelike detail and dynamic movement of the figures make it one of the most celebrated Baroque sculptures. Other notable sculptures by Bernini in the gallery include David, Rape of Proserpina, and Aeneas, Anchises, and Ascanius.

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Paintings by Caravaggio

Caravaggio was a revolutionary painter of the Baroque period, known for his innovative use of light and dark to create dramatic scenes. His painting, Boy with a Basket of Fruit, is a vivid and naturalistic depiction of a young boy holding a basket of fruit, which showcases Caravaggio's mastery of realism. David with the Head of Goliath, another one of his famous works, is a powerful portrayal of the biblical story of David and Goliath, depicting the victorious David holding the severed head of his enemy.

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Paintings by Raphael

Raphael was a prominent figure of the Italian Renaissance and his paintings are celebrated for their exceptional beauty and technical proficiency. Among the works featured in the Borghese Gallery, his Portrait of a Young Woman, also known as La Fornarina, is particularly renowned. The painting is a masterful depiction of a young woman, believed to be Raphael's lover and muse. La Fornarina's radiant beauty, captured through Raphael's exquisite use of color and composition, has made this painting one of the most treasured works in the gallery's collection.

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Artworks by Rubens, Titian, and Botticelli

The Borghese Gallery features several other notable artworks by acclaimed Renaissance artists such as Rubens Pieter Paul, Vecellio Titian, and Sandro Botticelli. Visitors can admire Rubens' exquisitely detailed paintings that reflect his passion for color and movement, Titian's vivid and highly realistic portraits that showcase his exceptional talent as a painter, and Botticelli's masterpieces that evoke a sense of ethereal beauty and grace that epitomizes the Renaissance era.

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Brief History of the Borghese Gallery

The Borghese Gallery was originally built in the early 17th century as a villa for Cardinal Scipione Borghese, who was a great art collector and patron. The cardinal's collection grew to include some of the most important artworks of the Renaissance period, and the villa became one of the most important art institutions in Rome. In the 19th century, the Borghese family sold the villa and its collection to the Italian government, and it was eventually opened to the public as a museum. Today, the Borghese Gallery is one of the most visited museums in Rome and continues to be a major center of Italian art and culture.

Who Built the Borghese Gallery?

Borghese Gallery

The Borghese Gallery was built by the architect Flaminio Ponzio for Cardinal Scipione Borghese in the early 17th century. The villa was designed to be a showcase for the cardinal's extensive art collection, and its architecture and design reflect the aesthetic sensibilities of the period.

Ponzio was one of the leading architects of the time and was known for his innovative designs and use of decorative elements. His work on the Borghese Gallery is considered to be one of his most important achievements.

Architecture of the Borghese Gallery

The Borghese Gallery is housed in a 17th-century villa, originally designed for Cardinal Scipione Borghese by the architect Flaminio Ponzio. Built between 1613 and 1616, the villa is considered one of the most important examples of Roman architecture from the Baroque period. Its façade features two orders of pilasters with pediments and Corinthian columns, while the interior boasts stunning frescoes by Giovanni Lanfranco and ceilings painted by Domenichino, all of which contribute to the villa's grandeur. The villa was later purchased by the Italian state and turned into a museum in 1903, but its original beauty and opulence remain intact.

Stepping into the place, you are sure to get the vibe of entering another century, a time when the powerful Borghese family ruled Rome by Pope Paul V’s papal authority.

Villa Borghese Gardens

Borghese Gallery

Frequently Asked Questions About the Borghese Gallery

What is the Borghese Gallery?

The Borghese Gallery is a museum in Rome that houses an impressive collection of sculptures and paintings, including works by Bernini, Caravaggio, and Raphael.

What is the Borghese Gallery famous for?

The museum is famous for its stunning art collection, which includes masterpieces from the Baroque period.

Where is the Borghese Gallery?

The Borghese Gallery is located at Piazzale Scipione Borghese, 5, 00197 Roma RM, Italy.

Why should I visit the Borghese Gallery?

If you are an art lover, this is the perfect space where you can stroll through the artworks of famous artists like Raphael, Bernini, and Caravaggio to name a few. You can also admire the architecture of the stunning villa and its surrounding lush gardens and parkland.

How do I book tickets to visit the Borghese Gallery?

Borghese Gallery tickets can be booked online.

How much is a ticket to visit the Borghese Gallery?

Your Borghese Gallery tickets start from €27.

Who built the Borghese Gallery?

The Borghese Gallery was originally designed for Cardinal Scipione Borghese by the architect Flaminio Ponzio.

When did the Borghese Gallery open?

The Borghese Gallery opened to the public in 1902.

What’s inside the Borghese Gallery?

Within just about 20 rooms in the Villa, you will find an impressive collection of sculptures and paintings, including works by Bernini, Caravaggio, and Raphael.

What are the Borghese Gallery opening hours?

The Borghese Gallery hours are from 9 AM to 7 PM daily.

What famous artworks are inside Borghese Gallery?

There are many masterpieces inside the Borghese Gallery such as The Hunt of Diana by Domenichino, The Young Sick Bacchus by Caravaggio, Melissa by Dosso Dossi, David with the Head of Goliath by Caravaggio, and Cupid Complaining to Venus by Lucas Cranach.

Why is the Borghese Gallery important?

The Borghese Gallery is a gem that is worth seeing when you’re in Rome. Its exceptional collection of Renaissance art and ancient Roman sculptures is housed in a beautiful 17th-century villa and offers a compact course in Italian aesthetics.

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