As you are probably aware, Lima is becoming a more multicultural and eclectic city. Interest and curiosity are no longer centered only on its privileged archeological sites, wild nature and exclusive gastronomy, but also on the diversity of nationalities living together that stimulates the creation of new art spaces. Lima’s international profiles, open minded people and a new generation with a more democratic approach to the arts than its predecessors, are a fresh driving audience for art galleries, art shows and art museums for the so called City of the Kings.
But you may not know that besides the remarkable contemporary, colonial and pre-columbian art museums that this eternally-young capital offers, Lima also embraces a European art museum, The Museum of Italian Art, which is placed in the heart of the Historic Centre and even so it goes almost unnoticed by the population. Its permanent collection enfolds paintings, _carrara_ marble statues and bronze sculptures donated by the contemporary Italian artists of the early 20th century. A hidden treasure for art lovers.
_Veneciani a Chioggia, oil on canvas, Ferruccio Scattola (Venezia 1863-Roma 1950)_
_Pomeriggio sul Mottarone, oil on Canvas, Giuseppe Amisani (Mede Lomellina 1881 – Portofino 1941)_
The conception of this European museum and collection lead us back to 1921, when celebrations for the hundredth Anniversary of Independence were taking place in Peru and major social changes were brewing in Italy. For this special event, the Italian community in Lima resolved to donate an invaluable gift, The Museum of Italian Art that today stands as a tribute to the arts of their nostalgic European past.
The neo classical style palace, that has also held several important temporary exhibitions, has been motivated by Bramante’s architecture, preserving reliefs
and ornaments inspired by Donatello, Ghiberti, Michelangelo and Botticelli; the façade holds the emblems of the most significant Italian cities and it also gives shelter to the most famous men of Italian history represented in two wonderful Venetian mosaics, who proudly welcome us on our arrival.
_Venetian mosaic, right front of museum_
Once inside, as you walk through the palace’s six rooms, you feel surrounded by a place and time in Italy, when social inequalities set the scene for major political changes and new political structures that influenced the art concepts. All the art pieces exhibited possess a special power that seduces the viewer. Your eyes are captivated by the beauty and delicate examples of the finest Italian art, reflected on the soft and elegant lines of a sculpture, the subtlety of a brush technique or the romanticism of a landscape combined with a sweet glance from a portrait.
_L’Estate, Carrara marble, Arturo Dazzi (Carrara 1881 – Pisa 1966)_
Since 1991, major efforts have been made to renovate the museum – both the building and the collection – and to revalue it. The progress made so far is thanks to the Italian embassy’ constant support and the Association of Friends of the Museum of Italian Art.
Museum of Italian Art
Paseo de la República 250, Lima 1.
Opening hours – From Tuesday to Sunday: 10am to 17 pm.
Fee entrance S/. 6.00
_Jessica de Pomar is an experienced Art Project Consultant for art institutions, having worked internationally for The Art Newspaper (UK), The Museum of Art of Fort Lauderdale (USA), and the Museum of America (Spain), as well as La Molina Borough (Perú). As collaborator for The Art Newspaper, she participated in ARCO Madrid and Art Bassel Miami Beach in several occasions. A Spanish and Peruvian national, she is currently a docent of the Museum of Art of Fort Lauderdale._The Museum of Italian Art, placed in the heart of the Historic Centre of Lima, is a hidden treasure for art lovers.