Compare this museum with another, Villa Necchi Campiglio — a similar project, only from fifty years down the line
This 19th century historic house museum is located in the Golden Quadrilateral, Milan’s fashion district. It houses a famous collection put together by the Barons Fausto and Giuseppe Bagatti Valsecchi to be displayed to the public. The museum is found on the “noble” floor of their mansion, designed in the 1880s in the Neo-Renaissance style, with the sumptuous rooms inspired by the taste of the Lombard Renaissance.
The setting is fit for the treasures it holds: the luxurious synergy between the two is impressive. The collection, spread throughout 17 rooms, consists of the whole range of Italian Renaissance decorative arts. Paintings by old masters such as Giovanni Bellini and Giampietrino can be found alongside 15th century furnishings, Renaissance glasswork, carved ivory artefacts and all sorts of showy weaponry and armour. It could be chaotic, but it’s not: every room is masterfully curated.
The Bagatti Valsecchi brothers were born a few centuries too late. The whole enterprise is a hark back to the Renaissance, an attempt to resurrect a bygone era. They even had the house’s period stone bath retrofitted for running water — quite the anachronism.
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