Palazzo Altemps verified

Rome, Lazio, Italy closed Visit museumarrow_right_alt

closed Virginia Woolf and Bloomsbury

The show

For the first time in Italy, Palazzo Altemps presents an exhibition that celebrates the spirit that animated Bloomsbury : the place where new forms of life and thought were experimented that changed Victorian principles and the strong patriarchal spirit of which it was still steeped the twentieth century. Orphaned in 1904, Virginia Stephen, not yet Woolf, and brothers Vanessa, Thoby and Adrian move from high-end Kensington to the less privileged neighborhood of Bloomsbury. Soon a large group of young women and men meet in the house at 46 Gordon Square to invent a new and free life.

Virginia Woolf and Bloomsbury. Inventing Life is a project of the National Roman Museum and the Electa publishing house, created in collaboration with the National Portrait Gallery in London . The exhibition brings to the fore the primitive soul of Palazzo Altemps, born as a noble house in the heart of Rome.

Conceived and curated by Nadia Fusini - profound connoisseur of the English author of which she edited the two-volume edition in the Meridiani - in collaboration with Luca Scarlini - writer, playwright, narrator, performance artist - the exhibition first of all tells an experience of intellectual friendship through books, words, paintings, photographs and objects of the protagonists of this adventure of art and thought.

The story of the Bloomsbury figures takes place in five rooms of Palazzo Altemps , each corresponding to the different sections of the exhibition. The young intellectuals who met in the Stephen sisters' rooms shared artistic predilections, romantic relationships, innovative work experiences, social motivations. These strong-willed individuals will become committed leftist economists, historians, writers, philosophers and artists - often very famous. They hoped, like Leonard Woolf, for a classless society or, like Virginia, for a world without ivory towers for its artists; John Maynard Keynes revolutionized economic thinking and laid the foundations of the welfare state as well as the collaboration of the state in the arts; Lytton Strachey invented a new way of writing history. Beyond the undisputed value of equality, first and foremost economic, another indispensable value was the recognition of the singularity of each one.

It is no coincidence that the exhibition is set up in the rooms of Palazzo Altemps, which in the past hosted a prestigious library - collected between the end of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries by Cardinal Marco Sittico Altemps and his nephew Giovanni Angelo, later merged into the Vatican Apostolic Library- , and in the nineteenth century they hosted prestigious literary salons. It is here, in the church of Clemenza and Sant'Aniceto kept inside the building, that Gabriele D'Annunzio married Maria Hardouin di Gallese in 1883, the family that last lived in Palazzo Altemps.


Works on display

Timetable and tickets


Piazza di Sant’Apollinare, 46
00186 Rome


Artsupp Card EN Fall

Artsupp Card EN Fall

Other exhibitions in Roma

last days date_range undefined


Until 26 March 2023

last days date_range undefined

Dark night

Until 26 March 2023

date_range undefined

The Cardinal's rooms

Until 10 April 2023

date_range undefined

Related searches

date_range undefined

Edward Burtynsky: Xylella Studies

Until 09 April 2023

date_range undefined

Graziano Arici

Until 01 May 2023

date_range undefined

Eve Arnold

Until 04 June 2023

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