a woman sitting on a bench in front of large works of art in an Italian art gallery

5 Best Italian Art Galleries and Museums

If you are traveling to Italy, chances are you hope to check out a few Italian art galleries and museums. You don’t have to look far to find them. Even Italian cities and streets seem to have been sculpted with an artistic touch, color palettes chosen with an expert’s eye. It would be a shame to miss out on local and historic culture by skipping out on Italian art galleries and museums. You’ll have plenty of time to embrace la dolce vita among the Roman, Milanese, or other locals.


‘Bramante’ spiral staircase inside the Vatican Museums. Designed by Giuseppe Momo in 1932.

A steady stream of eager visitors line up to enter prestigious Italian art galleries, like Galleria dell’Accademia and Uffizi in Florence as well as Rome’s Vatican Museums and Borghese Gallery. However, these are well-known, established locations. In this list, you’ll find less famous art galleries and museums to experience while you’re in the most visited Italian cities.

Here’s a quick list of the 5 Best Italian Art Galleries and Museums:

1/ Gucci Garden in Florence

When you think of Italian art galleries, Italian fashion brands may not immediately come to mind. However, at Gucci Garden, you can learn about and connect with the fashion house in a new way. This exhibition presents iconic pieces of Gucci fashion and accessories in the historic 14th-century Palazzo della Mercanzia. The three-story Gucci Garden space includes a cafe, bookshop, cinema, and boutique. Afterwards, reserve a luxurious lunch at Gucci Osteria by Massimo Bottura and shop Gucci decor for your home interiors.

art and fashion exhibited in the Gucci Garden in Florence

Gucci Garden in Florence

Visit Gucci Garden at Piazza della Signoria, 10, 50122 Firenze

2/ Pirelli HangarBicocca in Milan

There’s plenty to do in Milan in terms of art and culture, even with a short visit to Italy’s design capital. Pirelli HangarBicocca is a large space that was formerly a Pirelli factory. It now hosts contemporary art exhibitions from Italian and international artists. Allow yourself enough time time to peruse the various spaces, which reveal the architecture in distinctly different ways. If you happen to be visiting during Milan Design Week, there’s great involvement with the cities galleries and museums to experience.

exterior image of the pirelli hangarbicocca italian art gallery in milan

Pirelli HangarBicocca

seven large towers presented in an Italian art gallery in Milan and a visitor to Italian art gallery Pirelli HangarBicocca looking at art

Anselm Kiefer’s The Seven Heavenly Palaces – Photo by Lorenzo Palmieri / Matt Mullican’s The Feeling of Things at Italian art gallery Pirelli HangarBicocca

Enjoy a visit to Pirelli HangarBicocca at Via Chiese, 2, 20126 Milano

3/ Museo d’Arte Contemporanea Roma in Rome

MACRO is a center for contemporary art as well as culture. This Italian art gallery stands out in contrast to copious historic art and museum options in the Eternal City. It acts as both an exhibition space and meeting place for artists in the community. Visit the MACRO Instagram for glimpses of current and past exhibitions and relevant art as well as artists.

architecture of italian art gallery and artist in front of Italian art galleries

MACRO Italian art museum in Rome

MACRO can be found at Via Nizza, 138, 00198 Roma

4/ Pinacoteca Giovanni and Marella Agnelli in Turin

Your affinity for architecture will certainly be fostered in this unique Italian art gallery. Renzo Piano designed this art space, housed in a retired FIAT factory. The 25-piece personal collection of Giovanni and Marella Agnelli’s masterpieces is housed here. There are also several well-known names Matisse, Modigliani, Severini, Tiepolo, Renoir, and Manet.

a wide exterior image of the Italian art gallery Pinacoteca Agnelli in Turin

Pinacoteca Giovanni and Marella Agnelli in Turin

Check out Pinacoteca Angnelli at Via Nizza, 230/103, 10126 Torino

5/ Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice

This spot is definitely worth a stop. Its location in Palazzo Venier dei Leoni, the late Guggenheim heiress’ former home on the Grand Canal in Venice, plays a wonderful host to significant works of art. The permanent collection includes artists across many styles, from Picasso to Pollock and Kandinsky and Klee, to Dalí. There’s also a rotating exhibition space curated with attentive care and passion for art.

a woman in venice

Peggy Guggenheim

canal view of the exterior architecture of an Italian art gallery

Peggy Guggenheim Collection

Head to the Peggy Guggenheim Collection located at Dorsoduro, 701-704, 30123 Venezia

I hope this list inspires you to try something new amid your Italian holidays. Don’t forget to support the Italian art galleries and museums by picking up souvenirs in the gift shops. This is an easy and efficient way to shop Italian design. Thanks for reading and stay tuned for more Italian culture and interiors!

Photo Credits: 1) Feature Photo: Woman at Art Gallery: Pexels via Pixabay 2) Vatican Circular Staircase: Gullah via Pixabay 3) Gucci Garden 4) – 6) Pirelli HangarBicocca 7) & 8) MACRO 9) Pinacoteca Agnelli 10) & 11) Peggy Guggenheim Collection


About Grace Davin

Grace is an American content creator and design writer based in Milan. After completing her bachelor’s degree in Cultural Anthropology at the University of Minnesota Duluth, she decided to pursue life abroad, immersing herself in the communities of art, design, and architecture while working and living in Paris as well as Marrakech. Since arriving to Italy in 2016, she has been an active contributor for the interior design blog Italian Bark and content creator for Esperiri, an interior design company.

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