The Museum is located on the ground floor of the prestigious Palazzo dei Bargellini, designed by the architect Bartolomeo Provaglia. Construction began in 1638 and saw the intervention of other Bolognese sculptors such as Gabriele Brunelli and Francesco Agnesini who worked together on the façade (1658). The sumptuous staircase dates back to the first half of the following century (1730), and may have been designed by Carlo Francesco Dotti. After the Bargellini Family line died out in 1839, the palace was purchased by some members of Davia Family, another illustrious Bolognese family who lived there until 1874. The Museum opened in 1924 and it is still organised as it was from the beginning by Francesco Malaguzzi Valeri, City Supervisor of the Fine Arts. It includes two collections, the Quadreria Davia Bargellini (Davia Bargellini collection of canvasses) and Raccolte d'Arte Industriale (Collections of Industrial Art).
Davia Bargellini Collection
The Davia Bargellini collection is one of the few surviving examples of Bolognese historic art collecting. Along with the gallery of portraits of some of the most illustrious members of the Bargellini family (by Bartolomeo Passerotti, Prospero and Lavinia Fontana), there are also other large works painted by Marcantonio Franceschini at the beginning of the 18th century (Venus, Adonis, Baccus), still stretched in their elaborate frames. There are also paintings by Bartolomeo Cesi and Alessandro Tiarini, along with other works dating back to the 15th and 16th century such as La Madonna dei Denti by Vitale da Bologna, Pietà by Giovanni Elthinl (1368) and Madonna col Bambino by Cristoforo da Bologna.
Collection of Industrial Art
The collections of applied arts (or industrial art as Malaguzzi Valeri called it) derive from different places and periods. They are mainly works of art acquired by antique trade markets or private citizens around 1920 (the collection of wrought-iron objects), and others given to the Museum by the Bolognese Opere Pie (the chasubles of the 17th and 18th centuries) or by the Municipality of Bologna (the late 18th century carriage). There are also samples of Bolognese sculpture spanning the period from the 16th to 19th centuries (by Onofri, Mazza, Piò, Tandolini), as well as Renaissance ceramics and Bolognese furnishings and woodwork of the Baroque period. A marionette theatre and an 18th century model of a furnished building are also exhibited.
The hall on the first floor and the cycle of paintings open to the public on the first Friday every two months (March 3rd, 2017, May 5th, 2017, July 7th, 2017, September 1st, 2017, November 3rd, 2017) at 5.30 pm: meeting point at the Museum Davia Bargellini (free admission).
guided tours, educational services, bookshop. Guided tours for schools are available by appointment during the school year. Info: Educational Department tel. +39 051 2757209 and +39 051 6496652 or MCAADidattica@comune.bologna.it