The complex of Santa Maria della Vita (where you can see the wonderful "Compianto del Cristo Morto" made by Nicolò dell'Arca) is situated in the heart of Bologna, not far from Piazza Maggiore. It is one of the most important baroque monuments in Bologna and it is evidence of the old activity of the Battuti's Confraternity - founded at the end of the 1200s and devoted to the Virgin Mary and to help ill people. The Museum is inside the complex and it shows the past of the public health service in Bologna, with images of medical tools and scientific materials, painted in the XVII and XVIII centuries by painters as Alfonso Lombardi, Calvaert, and Gaetano Gandolfi. There are also furnitures, vestments and a collection of 150 majolica jars owned by the pharmacy of the hospital.
The museum has a surface of 580 sq/mt, considering the exposition rooms, the offices and the services. Near the museum there are 1000 sq/mt of empty rooms owned by the health service company. In the future, this empty space could become part of the museum, with medical research, scientific instruments, materials and also the house and office of Guido Reni. Among the paintings, there is the famous "jewel" of the Sun King, painted by Jean Petitot on a miniature studded with diamonds. Moreover, there is a room with two computers available if you want to know other health-care places in Bologna or the services offered, with explanations about how to use them. You can find also other historical collections about health care and services in the city (Putti Collection, Roncati Hospital, Anatomical Museum of the University, Collection of the Opera Pia Poveri Vergognosi, Collection of the Opera Pia Giovanni XXIII) and from the museum you can leave for a guided visit for these places. All the materials are divided for provenance: apartment of the Rector of the Sanctuary, Sacristy and "Tesoretto" of the Sanctuary, paintings and scientific objects coming from the Ospedale Maggiore. The Museum has been furnished like a "big Sacristy", using original furnitures of the Sanctuary. From the Museum there is also a direct access to the Oratory of the Battuti's Confraternity, recently restored. The description is taken from the website http://www.ospitedibologna.it)
full € 6; reduction € 4 (school, groups of min. 15 people, holders of an admission ticket of another Genus Bononiae museum, special conventions (Tper, Coop, Alitalia, Dante Alighieri), visitors from 6 to 18 years old, University students, holders of Card Musei Metropolitani Bologna, holders of Bologna Welcome card,holders of FAI cards free: children up to 5 years old, the disabled with helper, tourist guide with professional badge, Police, holders of Membership Card Genus Bononiae
COMPIANTO + MUSEUM AND ORATORY
full € 8; reduction € 5 (school, groups of min. 15 people, holders of an admission ticket of another Genus Bononiae museum, special conventions (Tper, Coop, Alitalia, Dante Alighieri), visitors from 6 to 18 years old, University students) free: children up to 5 years old, the disabled with helper, tourist guide with professional badge, Police, holders of Membership Card Genus Bononiae
The museum is located in a consecrated church that must respect the times of the Mass. The entrance does not present any difficulty for the hearing impaired.
In the church work is in progress for the creation of descriptive panels for the chapel and the altar.
On the second floor there is the oratory from the imposing architecture that houses the temporary exhibitions and the painting "Il transito della vergine" ("The transit of the virgin") introduced by hall panels.
More information can be obtained via QRcode and the history of the building can be downloaded from the website.
Motor disability and difficulty of movement
The monumental complex of Santa Maria della Vita as a whole is accessible to everyone, but the visit to the famous Compianto sul Cristo Morto (Lamentation of the Dead Christ) by Niccolò dell'Arca is not accessible to people in wheelchairs or with serious problems of mobility.
Four consecutive steps, without a handrail nor aids to overcome them, must be taken to reach the sculptural group, placed to the right of the altar.