As reported by Il Giornale dell’Arte , the Torlonia collection, closed since 1976, will, eventually, be put on public display.

By Martina Bollini

As reported by Il Giornale dell’Arte, the Torlonia collection, closed since 1976, will, eventually, be put on public display. Considered the world’s most important private collection of ancient art, the Torlonia collection includes countless masterpieces, such as wall paintings from the so-called François Tomb and the Giustiniani Hestia. These works of art were once showcased in the Torlonia family palace, turned into a museum by Giovanni and Alessandro in the 19th century. A banking family, the Torlonia put together the collection requesting artworks to secure loans. In this way, defaulting Roman dynasties (Giustiniani, Caetani, Orsini) made their fortune. Other pieces were found during excavation campaigns in the Torlonia family estates.

Since the ‘70s, the collection has been dismantled and abandoned into storage. The Italian government has relentlessly tried to find an agreement with the Torlonia from then on. It now seems that the family is willing to cooperate and in 2017 an exhibition will host part of the collection. After Italy, the exhibition will probably visit the US and the UK.


Details from the François Tomb, 4th century BCE.

Giustiniani Hestia, c. 470 BCE.

Bust of Livia Drusilla, 40 BCE – 29 BCE.

Relief of Portus, late 2nd – early 3rd century BCE.

Statue of Augustus from Boville, 1st century BCE – 1st century CE. 

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