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of Gold and Turquoise Show all photos
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of Gold and Turquoise:

The Borghese ceramics of Pratica di Mare

From 26 March to 19 May 2024

Boncompagni Ludovisi Museum

Boncompagni Ludovisi Museum

via Boncompagni, 18, Rome

Closed now: open at 09:00

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the Boncompagni Ludovisi House Museum directed by Matilde Amaturo and belonging to the State Museums Directorate of Rome led by the General Director of Museums Prof. Massimo Osanna will host the Gold and Turquoise exhibition. The Borghese ceramics of Pratica di Mare, curated by Daria Borghese. The exhibition celebrates the centenary of the opening of the Artistic Ceramics Factory of Pratica di Mare (1924-2024) and is made up of around three hundred objects that tell the story of ceramic manufacturing and of the woman who strongly desired, founded and carried it forward for decades: Maria Monroy, wife of Camillo Borghese.

The artefacts on display, such as the sumptuous table furnishings that shine with gold, silver and turquoise, the objects copied from the archaeological finds of ancient Lavinium and the amusing animalia, demonstrate how the manufacturing of Pratica di Mare has had its own distinctive character.


Maria Monroy Borghese undertook the activity of the laboratory with the intention of offering job opportunities in an economically depressed area and, at the same time, promoting apprenticeships especially for unmarried women with children. The entire project is therefore a female story, the result of the intertwining of the ancient profession of the ceramist, the philanthropy of the Roman aristocracy and the pedagogical theories of the time. The production managers, who alternate over the years, from Renzo Cellini to Francesco Caraglia, are joined by the talent of Princess Borghese who is responsible for the artistic conception of the products and the development of the cooking techniques. The factory, which continued its production of ceramics even after the death of the princess in 1964, closed in 2011.

The ceramics on display are a precious testimony of Roman and Lazio production, of which the Casa Museo Boncompagni Ludovisi preserves and exhibits the works of various artists: from Duilio Cambellotti to the Tidei Manifattura of Grottaferrata, to the Scuola delle Mura of the Randone family to Olga Modigliani, to name a few.

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