Posted by: kimberlysullivan | March 19, 2013

Reason #5364 to love Rome: Centrale Montemartini Museum

Montemartini Museum, RomeMost tourists never make it to this unusual museum. It’s a little off the well-worn tourist track, in the Ostiense neighborhood , a former industrial zone of Rome.

Nevertheless, Centrale Montemartini  is easily reached by public transport and definitely worth a visit.

This unlikely satellite of Rome’s Capitoline Museum began its life in June 1912 as a thermoelectric power plant, fueling all of Rome’s electricity needs. Gradually other power plants were built, but this was the only plant not damaged in bombing during World War II and for some time continued as the capital’s only electric power supply. Montemartini fell into disrepair and eventual disuse by the 1970s.

Montemartini Museum, RomeWhen Rome’s Capitoline Museum began its process of renovation in 1997, it was looking for large exhibition spaces to temporarily house some of its collection of Roman statues and artifacts. It was decided to move some of the pieces to the Centrale Montemartini, where ancient Roman statues graced the backdrop of hulking 20th century power plant equipment.

The exhibition was entitled “The machines and the gods” and the combination of classic Roman art and 20th century industrial architecture proved a winning combination with the public.

Montemartini Museum, RomeWhen the restoration project of the Capitoline Museum was fully completed and the works of art on display were returned to the refurbished museum space, it was decided to maintain the Centrale Montemartini as an annex to the Capitoline Museum.

Today, Montemartini houses the newest acquistions of the Capitoline Museum, displayed beautifully in the stark industrial space.

On your next trip to Rome, why not visit the Centrale Montemartini to observe this interesting juxtaposition of 2nd and 20th century Roman artistry?

From Montemartini, you’re not far from Rome’s fabulous Cemetery of Artists and Poets. Why not combine the two?

Centrale Montemartini is located on Via Ostiense 106 and is opened Tuesday – Sunday,  9:00 – 19:00. Tickets for adults are 6.50 euro or 11.50 euro  for a combined ticket to Musei Capitolini (Capitoline Museum) and Centrale Montemartini (valid over a 7 day period).


Responses

  1. Kimberly you are a mine of information! I know who I’d like as my tour guide in Roma!

    • You have to actually come to see us in Rome for that, Catherine. : ) Hopefully now that the snow is melting up in the Dolomiti, you can be tempted…

      • We are nearly done!

  2. I saw this museum on a BBC travel documentary recently and it looked great – amazing contrast in setting and contents.

    • Hi Grace! It’s nice to see the museum making its way into travel documentaries. Montemartini is really beautiful, but never very crowded. But it’s well worth the visit!

  3. Thank you for this virtual visit to the Montemartini Museum! I enjoyed it…

  4. Thanks, Julia. And when you come over, you’ll enjoy the real one even more. : )


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Categories

%d bloggers like this: