Today I went to the Galleria di Palazzo Barberini. This museum and art gallery has collections that are from the Galleria Nazionale d’Arte Antica in addition to the paintings from the collection of the Barberini Family.
It houses many famous works by Renaissance artists such as Caravaggios’s “Judith Beheading Holafernes”, Hans Holbein’s “Henry VII” and Raphael’s “La Fornarina”.
The structure itself is a work of art. The Palazzo Barberini is a 16th century palace that has two massive staircases designed by rivals Bernini and Borromini. Many of the rooms have wonderful inlaid marble floors and elaborate fresco ceilings.
After leaving the Palazzo Barberini, I walked up the street to Borromini’s San Carlo alle Quattro Fontane and continued down the Via del Quirinale past Bernini’s Sant’Andrea al Quirinale to the Piazza del Quirinale where there is the massive Fontana di Castore e Polluce with a huge obelisk.
The statues of Castor and Pollux and the obelisk were recycled from other parts of Rome. The obelisk once adorned the Mausoleum of Augustus, and the statues had been in the Baths of Constantine.
The Quirinal Hill is the tallest of the seven hills of Rome and is a fitting location for the Palazza Quirinale, where the Italian President lives. I spent the rest of the day walking through Rome marveling at the many churches, fountains, piazzas, and pretty much anything I came across.