The Vatican Museums Tour
Buon giorno! The A Road Retraveled Vatican Museums Tour continues with a visit to the Pinacoteca (art Gallery), Gallery of the Tapestries, Gallery of the Maps and the famous Raphael Rooms.
If you haven’t seen Part 1 yet, please CLICK HERE to watch part 1 of the Vatican Museums Tour.
The Vatican Pinacoteca (art Gallery) is rich in art with masterpieces by Giotto, Raphael, Caravaggio, Leondardo da Vinci, and many of history’s greatest artists. The collection that now takes up 18 rooms was established by Pope Pius VI, with a collection of only 116 pieces and it grew to 460 precious paintings through donations and purchases.
The museums also include the Gallery of the Tapestries. This is a collection of various 15th and 17th century Flemish tapestries inspired from drawings made by Raphael’s students depicting the life of Christ. They were first displayed in the Sistine Chapel in 1531, and then moved to this gallery in 1838. To preserve these aging tapestries the gallery is kept in near darkness and flash photography is not permitted.In the video you will see a special effect created on one of the Tapestries that gives you the feeling you are “being watched”. See for yourself!
Among favorite is the Gallery of the Maps…. 40 maps were frescoed on the walls depicting Italian regions and Papal territories as they were known in the late 1500’s when the maps were created. At the entrance you start with the boot of Italy and walk your way up to the Alps.
In the video you will see how the maps are grouped on both sides of the walls and the precious designs created by the artists. You will also see how the richly decorated ceiling different periods of the church’s history are represented in relation to the maps.
These are the Papal apartments chosen by Pope Julius II as his residence. The Pope commissioned Raphael and his school to fresco the rooms in 1508. They were finished in 1524.
The Raphael rooms consists of: The Constantine Room, The Room of Heliodorus, The Room of Segnatura, and Room of the Fire in the Borgo.
In the video you will learn about the amazing stories told in the frescoes in the rooms and purpose the Rooms held.
The most recognized fresco everyone comes to see is “The School of Athens” – 50 figures comprised of the 50 most famous thinkers and philosophers and their students are inside a Renaissance temple said to have been inspired by Bramante’s designs for the new St Peter’s Basilica. In the center is Plato and his student Aristotle. Each holds their respective books, and discussing idealism versus realism: Plato idealistically points up, and Aristotle realistically points down to Earth. Other figures in the fresco are Socrates (Plato’s teacher), Pythagoras, Euclid (or Archimedes), Ptoleme, Zoroaster, Diogenes, Heraclitus.In the video you will learn which instruments these philosophers and thinkers hold and use, and which figures were actual portraits of contemporaries of the times (such as Michelangelo, da Vinci and Raphael’s own self portrait!) WISH TO VISIT THE VATICAN? Where to book your No Line Vatican Tickets: Vatican Online Ticket Office