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Museo di Castelvecchio

If you are an estimator of the Italian and European Medieval, Renaissance or Gothic-Baroque architecture, art and sculpture, we highly recommend a visit to Castelvecchio Museum.

The splendid setting of the Scaliger fortress houses an exhibition that occupies about thirty rooms with works dating from the Middle Ages to the second half of the eighteenth century: sculptures, paintings, ancient weapons, pottery, miniatures, jewelry and various other crafts.

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Particular mention deserves the art gallery, in the wing, called the Reggia, which houses paintings dated between the 13th and the 16th centuries, the path that leads – by a suspended walkway - through the gallery and to the second floor of the Mastio, the Corte d'Armi, and the garden. Completed only a short time before the museum's inauguration, in 1958, the latter features a very suggestive structure, similar to that of the Japanese Zen gardens.

The Scaliger fortress of Castelvecchio was built as a defensive bulwark of the city, in medieval times, on the orders of Cangrande II della Scala and was, for a short time, residence of the homonymous family.

As the centuries passed by, it was repeatedly targeted by assaults that led to the conquest of the city. It sustained serious damage during the Second World War bombings, then was restored to its original beauty and transformed into a museum in the 1960s by Carlo Scarpa, a most renowned Italian architect and designer.

In 2015 the Museum of Castelvecchio was the victim of one of the most serious thefts in the history of Italian art: 17 the stolen works, including paintings by Rubens, the two Tintoretto (Jacopo and Domenico), Mantegna and Pisanello. Fortunately, the stolen masterpieces were found in Ukraine and from there returned to their proper location about a year after the disappearance.

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