Jesi Foundation Savings Bank verified

Jesi, Marche, Italy closed Visit museumarrow_right_alt

ongoing Virna Lisi. Diva is Antidiva

The show

The Cassa di Risparmio di Jesi Foundation, the Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia – Cineteca Nazionale and the Virna Lisi Foundation present the Virna Lisi exhibition. Diva and Antidiva , a complete exhibition dedicated to the actress in her city of origin, conceived by Mauro Tarantino and curated by Bruno Di Marino, media historian and teacher at the Academy of Fine Arts in Rome.

The exhibition is also created thanks to the important contribution of audiovisual and photographic materials from the archives of the Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia-Cineteca Nazionale, as well as further images and documentary material provided by the Virna Lisi Foundation. The exhibition also benefits from the collaboration of Rai Teche and the patronage of the Ministry of Culture, Rai Marche , the Marche Region and the Municipality of Jesi .

The exhibition aims to pay homage to the great Italian actress who grew up in Jesi before moving to Rome and starting her career in the world of cinema, theater and television at a very young age. The exhibition – set up in the spaces on the ground floor of Palazzo Bisaccioni – reconstructs the career of this great performer, also restoring to the public her private and family dimension, her being a woman and mother, through the memories and objects of a life.

The subtitle of iva and antidiva alludes to the two faces of the planet Virna Lisi: on the one hand the film and television actress - with an important theatrical stint directed by Strehler, Squarzina and Michelangelo Antonioni - who embodied an eternal model of beauty and of elegance; on the other, the shy and reserved woman, ready to renounce the star system but not the affections of her family. Two apparently irreconcilable aspects which, however, have strongly characterized Lisi's personality and crossed the various phases of her existence.

Virna Lisi. Diva and Antidiva is organized in chronological and thematic order: from her debut in the 1950s to the international parenthesis in the United States and France), from advertising - the famous Chlorodont toothpaste which made her known to the general public: "with that mouth she can say anything thing” -, passing through the fertile period of the 60s up to the period of his artistic maturity.

The exhibition itinerary - punctuated by explanatory panels that illustrate the salient moments of his life and professional activity - is composed of photographic portraits - of authors such as Douglas Kirkland and Angelo Frontoni - pictorial portraits, stage and set photographs, posters and photograms of films, as well as objects of various types belonging to the actress and family photos, the latter materials coming from the Pesci family archive. Some clips of his films and most important television works are shown in loop on screens in the various rooms, thus constituting a sort of visual flow, which culminates in an immersive audiovisual installation created by the video artist and theater director Fabio Massimo Iaquone entitled Geometrie dell 'enchantment .

On the occasion of the exhibition the volume Virna Lisi is published and presented. Diva and Antidiva , edited by Bruno Di Marino and published by Danilo Montanari Editore . The elegant and prestigious publication dedicated to the actress, composed of 176 richly illustrated pages, contains an extensive essay by the curator and other authoritative contributions, detailed sheets of all the film, television and theater works (about 130) in which the actress has participated, as well as several photographic contributions from the Centro Sperimentale di Cinematografia – Cineteca Nazionale and the Virna Lisi Foundation.

On the occasion of the exhibition, a film festival was organized in collaboration with the Res Humanae association which, at the Il Piccolo cinema theater in Jesi, will screen Fabrizio Corallo's documentary Virna Lisi the woman who gave up on Hollywood and some feature films starring the actress .

Another event connected to the exhibition is the competition for video makers and graphic artists in the field of digital art, entitled Virna Lisi: Italian icon , which has as its object the creation of a site-specific visual mapping. The awarded works will be projected on the facade of Palazzo Bisaccioni during the exhibition period.

Virna Lisi (1936-2014) was one of the most versatile and fascinating actresses of Italian cinema, an iconic presence known internationally, also thanks to some films shot in Hollywood ( How Murder Your Wife with Jack Lemmon or Assault on a Queen at alongside Frank Sinatra) who made her famous in the mid-60s, so much so that she was depicted by the pop artist Mel Ramos sitting on a gigantic hamburger. His career spans between his debut film… E Napoli canta (1953) and the feature film released after his death, Latin Lover (2015). Lasting 60 years and consisting of around 130 films, television dramas and series, with an important theatrical interlude at the end of the 1950s, Virna Lisi's career has never been interrupted. Numerous directors who directed it, to name just a few: Germi, Monicelli, Losey, Comencini, Majano, Fulci, Maselli, Kramer, Young, Steno, Corbucci, Cavani, Risi, Zampa, De Filippo, Verneuil, Dmytryk, Lizzani , Bolognini, Amelio, Lattuada and Vanzina.

Free admission

Opening hours: Monday – Sunday 9.30am-1pm / 3.30pm-7.30pm. Closed on December 25th and January 1st.

Works on display

Timetable and tickets


Piazza Angelo Colocci 4
60035 Jesi


Discounts and prices’ reductions with the Artsupp Card

With the Artsupp Card you can get, for the first time, discounts and reduced entrance tickets for Italian museums .

Discover more

What you can find on Artsupp

Artsupp is the museums’ portal through which it’s easy to discover art, exhibitions and artworks. Now museums in France, the UK, the Netherlands, Germany and Spain can also share their activities with users

About us