THE ART COLLECTION OF PALAZZO BORROMEO: A HERITAGE SHARED WITH THE WORLD
Works of art travel around the world serving communities, to educate, share knowledge, stimulate reflection and offer gratifying experiences. That is the vision of the museum concept of the International Council of Museums (ICOM). At the centre, the principle of the circulation of artists’ timeless masterpieces.
In line with this principle, over the years the treasures of the Borromeo family’s cultural heritage have also travelled around Italy, to Europe and all over the world.
From the rooms of the Palazzo on Isola Bella, many that are the highest expression of Baroque have reached other places of culture on the occasion of exhibitions and following collaborations with some of the most prestigious institutions and museum structures
And they continue to do so: a few days after the official inauguration of Bergamo Brescia Italian Capital of Culture 2023, the painting by Peeter Snijers “Portrait of a Man in Pilgrim’s Costume” is moving from Palazzo Borromeo to the Museum of Santa Giulia in Brescia for the exhibition “Poverty and Nobility. Giacomo Ceruti in the Europe of the 18th Century” that begins on 14 February.
Around two years ago, the painting “Santa Caterina”, attributed to the female painter Fede Galizia as a copy of a work by Parmigianino, conserved in the Galleria Berthier, was loaned to the Castello del Buonconsiglio in Trento for a monographic exhibition entitled “Fede Galizia Amazon of Painting”.
Remaining in Piedmont, in 2018 three panels were temporarily transferred from Palazzo Borromeo to the Museo Arca in Vercelli for the exhibition “The Renaissance of Gaudenzio Ferrari”. The exhibition also involved the cities of Novara and Varello Sesia, extending outside museum sites into churches and buildings of the territory with frescos by the Master. “San Rocco”, “San Sebastiano” and “Madonna with Child with Saint Joseph and Saint Anthony the Abbot”, these are the works that do not appear in the museum itinerary of Palazzo Borromeo.
The prestigious Pinacoteca di Brera in Milan has also benefited from a loan from the art collection of Palazzo Borromeo. In 2017, on the occasion of the redesigning of the layout of the rooms devoted to the 18th century, the “Blessed Bernardo Tolomei Helping Plague Victims” (Pompeo Batoni and his workshop), the usual position of which on Isola Bella is in the Napoleon Room, was also exhibited here
The artistic dialogue with Milan has precedents in 2008, when the exhibition “Looking at Nature from Poussin to Turner” was organised at the Museo Diocesano Chiostri di Sant’Eustorgio.