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must-see art galleries in italy


Italy is a country famous for its art. The history of the country is steeped in grand architecture, and even in Roman times, Italy took architecture and artwork to a new level. Some of the world’s most famous artists are Italian – Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo and Caravaggio to name a few and it is in Italy you can find some of their most famous artwork. 
When staying at our luxury villas in Italy, be it Tuscany or Sicily, we recommend soaking up the culture and art of Italy at a museum or art gallery. In every town and city, you can find museums dedicated to the history of the region, giving you an insight into how Italy came to be. In addition to art galleries celebrating the best of Italy’s Renaissance art, there are also several contemporary art galleries to visit on your trip. 
The Uffizi Gallery, Florence
Florence, the capital of Tuscany, was the centre of medieval Europe, being one of the wealthiest cities of the time. It is also considered to be the birthplace of the Renaissance and due to is artistic and architectural heritage, it is thought to be one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Built in 1581, the Uffizi Gallery is at the centre of Florence’s art and history. The building itself is an architectural masterpiece and huge part of the Medici family’s, who once ruled over Florence, art collection is displayed in the Uffizi. It contains a lot of famous masterpieces, among them Leonardo’s Annunciation, Sandro Botticelli’s Primavera and Birth of Venus. In fact, there are so many magnificent pieces of artwork here; it is hard to see them all in one day. If you want to pack in as much as possible, arrive early in the morning, and make a list of the paintings you really want to see. 
Galleria dell’Accademia, Florence
While also in Florence, you should also see one of the most famous statues in the world: Michelangelo’s David. The original statue is on display at the Gallery of the Academy of Florence, along with an extensive collection of Renaissance art and Florentine Gothic artwork. There is the Museum of Musical Instruments to take a look at. If your time is limited, the gallery offers guided tours or a private guide to accompany you as you wonder at the masterpieces, providing more knowledge on the work. 
Bargello National Museum, Florence
With some a rich history in art and culture, it is no surprise that Florence has so many fantastic art galleries and museums. Bargello is a popular one with tourists, and it isn’t just because it is a piece of glorious architecture. The Bargello used to be a prison, and dates back to 1255, making it one of the oldest buildings in the city. The Museum is home to masterpieces by Michelangelo, including his Bacchus, Donatello’s David and Gambologna’s Mercury. The Bargello National Museum also has a fine collection of tapestries textiles and ceramics. 
Galleria Nazionale dell’Umbria, Perugia
Perugia is the home to the National Gallery of Umbria, housing even more Renaissance art than you can imagine. Within its walls are paintings dating back to the 1200s, many of which were painted locally in Umbria or neighbouring Tuscany. Featured artists include Angelico, Duccio, Francesco, Gozzoli and Perugino. The collection comprises the greatest representation of the Umbrian School of painting, ranging from the 13th to the 19th-century. 
Francesco Pantaleone Arte Contemporanea, Palermo
If Renaissance art is not to your taste, there are many contemporary art galleries to visit during your holiday, and the beautiful island of Sicily has several. The Francesco Pantaleone Arte Contemporanea (FPAC) can be defined as the pioneer of contemporary art in Sicily. When the gallery first opened, the goal was to create a space for contemporary art in Sicily and raise the profile of the island on the international market. Nowadays, there is an exciting program of exhibitions and events happening at the gallery, showcasing the works of artists such as Per Barclay, Julieta Arlada and the American-Italian duo Lovett/Codagnone. There is also a space within the gallery dedicated to new and emerging artists, from Italy and further afield.  
Museo di Capodimonte, Naples
The Museo di Capodimonte is located in the palace of the same name, a grand Bourbon Palazzo in Naples. The museum houses many Neapolitan paintings and decorative art, several works from other Italian schools of painting, and ancient Roman sculptures, making it one of the largest in the country. The collection can be traced back to 1738 and King Charles VII of Naples and Sicily. Over the years, the palace grew and was filled with more and more art, as well as a laboratory being built for restoring paintings. You can see paintings by the likes of Raphael, Titian, Botticelli, Caravaggio and Simone Martini too. 
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