Museo del Novecento

Museo del Novecento, Milan: Hours, Address, Museo del Novecento Reviews: 4.5/5

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Museo del Novecento

Museo del Novecento
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The Museo del Novecento, located inside the Palazzo dell'Arengario in Piazza del Duomo, hosts a collection of over four thousand works that catalyze the development of 20th century Italian art. The Museo del Novecento was established on 6 December 2010 with the goal of spreading knowledge of 20th century art and offering a more comprehensive insight into the collections that the city of Milan has inherited over time. Beside its core exhibition activity, the Museum is active in the conservation, investigation and promotion of 20th century Italian cultural and artistic heritage with the final aim of reaching an ever wider audience. With an eye toward the city, the Museo del Novecento develops around multiple locations. The Permanent Collection follows a chronological path where collective exhibitions alternate with solo art shows. The grand spiral staircase inside the building welcomes visitors and introduces them to the visit of the Museum with the Il Quarto Stato (The Fourth Estate) by Pellizza da Volpedo. The bookshop and the restaurant are the Museum's meeting places. The Neon by Lucio Fontana represents a final embrace to the city. Reflecting Milan's feverish cultural dynamism, the Permanent Collection is essentially the story of several private collections that have been brought together thanks to the generosity and passion for art of many private collectors. Since its inception, the collection has been augmented by major gifts from artists, collectors and philanthropists who play an active role in the growth of the Museum's heritage, which today reflects the rich trajectory of art from the early 20th century through the present. An outstanding example of architecture and, today, an impressive installation communicating directly with the city, since 2010 the Palazzo dell'Arengario has accommodated the Museo del Novecento. This landmark building, designed by Griffini, Magistretti, Muzio, and Portaluppi, was renovated by the Rota Group to host a richly layered collection of 20th century Italian art. The transformation of the Palazzo dell'Arengario was dictated by the need to organize the composition of Milan's Civiche Raccolte d'Arte (Municipal Art Collections) around two distinct poles. While the historic premises of Villa Reale were meant to host collections dating from the 19th century, the Palazzo dell'Arengario was singled out for the exhibits of 20th century artwork. The latter was particularly meaningful for the harmony existing between its architecture and the collection it was meant to display. This project enabled to best exploit the interior premises, while turning the building into one of the major cultural places in Milan. The grand spiral staircase inside the building is probably the most impressive architectural feature of the Museum: a functional element that connects several levels, from the subway up to the panoramic terrace overlooking the Duomo.
Suggested duration
1-2 hours
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The area
Neighborhood: Centro Storico
The pulsating core of Milan is in Centro. Duomo Square is enclosed by the gothic cathedral, the historic icon of Milan. However, shopping is what draws most crowds to this area. The classy and versatile Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II with luxury boutiques and high quality restaurants will turn any shopping or lunch expedition into a royal experience. Head to the rooftop of the flagship La Rinascente to enjoy the view of the animated square with a panorama of the Duomo. The Corso Vittorio Emanuele II is the street for high-end shopping. Brands of all kinds and street artists attract the attention of all visitors; while at Via Santa Radegonda 16, Luini Panzerotti is a much appreciated street food shop providing unimaginable culinary experiences. If shopping takes its toll on you, consider visiting Castello Sforzesco, a 15th century castle housing several museums. Those looking to relax can go to Parco Sempione, where nature provides respite from the energy of this dynamic and international city.
How to get there
  • Duomo • 2 min walk
  • Cordusio • 5 min walk
Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
Popular mentions

1,943 reviews
Very good

New Jersey2,926 contributions
I visited the Museo del Novecento in December 2019. It is one of the few museums that is open on Mondays as most Milan museums are closed on Mondays. I had to wait in a long line to buy a ticket which cost 5 euros. There were a few paintings by Picasso, Matisse, Modigliani, Kandinsky. But most of the museum is dedicated to Italian artists with a focus on the years 1920 to present. As you work your way up to the top floor, you can get a great view of the Duomo and Piazza del Duomo.
Written February 19, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Paul O
County Monaghan, Ireland2,339 contributions
This museum displays twentieth century art in chronological order. It makes for a interesting trip through the decades. The building itself is impressive and gives some good views of the Duomo area.

Sometimes the layout of the tour can get confusing but plenty of staff there to point you in the right direction.
Written November 15, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Lille, France662 contributions
I truly enjoyed the experience at the Museum del Novecento. It has a wonderful collection of contemporary italian Artists (e.g. Lucio Fontana, Piero Manzoni, Salvatore Scarpita) in a beautiful setting right next to the Duomo. There are few early XX artists as well. The place is huge and while I was there it had some intriguing optical art exposition. If you are overwhelmed by classical renaissance art (Brera), , this could be a nice break. On the down side, there is not cafe and the gift shop was poor; I was expecting more from this venue.
Written January 2, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Norwich, UK144 contributions
Some guide books say this is open on Monday, its not. (Tues – Sunday)
I have to say this is not a visitor friendly venue. The internal layout is complicated the main lift didn’t work and we were prevented from using some other lifts. The visit path is a one way progress that involves walking up a huge spiral slope. Some staff were not helpful, however others went out of their way for us. The temporary exhibition was very easy to miss as it wasn’t signed !
The exhibits are good and the labels very explanative, but there are very few places to sit down and the staff frowned pointedly if you perched on one of their seats for a moment.

The restaurant (it is a café but don’t expect a warm welcome if you just want a coffee) is hard work to reach with the out of commission lift and vv expensive with up themselves staff.

So stimulating exhibits but its actually a stressful environment that could easily be improved with a visitor oriented curator and staff team.
Written July 6, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Bath74 contributions
The gallery itself is great, however the visit was completely ruined by the rudeness of some staff - one member in particular.

I will be fair and say hat initially our visit started well. The reception staff were helpful, as were the men in the first section of the gallery near the Picasso’s. However, as we moved round a very tall lady approached us and was extremely rude. My eyesight isn’t great and I was crouched slightly trying to read the information besides the pictures (which were all behind glass...) she shouted at me to move back immediately and was very accusatory and confrontational. I apologised and tried to explain that I was just trying to read the context and she got even angrier, accusing me of calling her a liar. I apologised again and moved on, this time to some sculptures in a glass case/box. I was trying to make a concerted effort to be further back, but was also aware that I was doing nothing which would damage the art. Again, as I crouched down to read the context, she reappeared and this time was very confrontational. Honestly, from her reaction - had she not been in her place of work - I’d have been worried that she would become violent. It was like she was looking for a fight with me. I was very unsettled and she completely ruined my experience of the gallery. After this, I couldn’t wait to leave and would never go back. Honestly, the rudest, angriest women I’ve ever met.
Written June 2, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Jessica A
12 contributions
One of the best Museums I had the pleasure of visiting in all of Europe. Their collection is so varied and interesting, comprising of a condensed history of Italian artists, throughout different periods and styles, as well as comparing them to more well known contemporaries. The layout is fantastic, starting from more traditional portraiture, to more modern installations, and even a few exhibits which were totally immersive and interactive. Descriptions and literature are available in both Italian and English, which proved to be informative and educational. One of the biggest draws is that the museum stays open quite late, and for tourists on short visits with full days is optimal. We arrived at around 19:30 and left at closing around 22:00. More than enough time to stroll leisurely through the entire place and truly enjoy all the installations. The location is great and central, overlooking the Piazza del Duomo, it boasts some incredible views of the cathedral and the square, far better than the often crowded terrazos of the Gallaria. Definitely do recommend, no need to be immersed into art to enjoy it, and there's something for everyone to enjoy.
Written January 29, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Brooklyn, NY370 contributions
Halfway through the first floor I thought my visit was going to be a short one. An hour later I was thrilling at what I had seen, including a view from the top floor looking out and OVER the Duomo which has got to be unparalleled in the city. The fabulous examples of 20th C Italian art are curated beautifully and presented thoughtfully, and there are enough Morandi’s to satisfy the soul.
Written November 1, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Birmingham, UK39 contributions
Visiting Milan? Make sure you go to this museum. Purchase an audio guide and take a bottle of water round with you as there's lots and lots to see in this fantastic museum. A wonderful collection that tells the story of modern Italian art in a straightforward and engaging way that anyone will enjoy. It's been a few days since my visit and I'm still thinking about it!
Written July 31, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Angela M
West Sussex, UK118 contributions
The literal translation of this museum’s name, “the museum of the 900” is a little confusing for non-Italian speakers. When referring to centuries, the Italians tend to drop the first millennium, so this is really “the museum of the 1900s”, i.e. what we would call the 20th century. In fact it’s really an art gallery and since English is the lingua franca for most travellers, I think it would be hugely helpful if the name on the façade were sub-titled “The Museum of 20th Century Art” or something similar.

However, as I have frequently noted, marketing is not the Italians’ strong suit. We had no idea when we visited on 24 March that this was the first day of a first time ever exhibition in Italy of Andy Warhol’s massive work entitled Sixty Last Suppers. There were no banners outside, no leaflets in the foyer, nothing. We simply came upon it as we ascended the escalator to the top floor. Whether you love or hate it as a work, it’s a massive coup to have got it in Milan for the 30th anniversary of Warhol’s death and you would surely have thought there would have been more publicity about it!

As it was, the Museum wasn’t very busy. It’s a big building on several floors with some very impressive works of art, but we found the signage really poor so that instead of following what should have been an obvious route, we found ourselves retracing our steps on more than one occasion. Again, more effort needs to be put into making this an easier and more informative visitor experience, especially for foreigners.

We were pleased to see that there is a reasonably good shop there with a range of books and gifts relating to the world of art and design.
Written April 22, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Cleveland, OH373 contributions
I certainly enjoyed this unique museum, which contained an extensively curated collection of 20th century Italian art. Certainly, there were a lot of conversation pieces--we got to laugh at a ludicrous can of artist’s s___. I sprung for the audio tour (5 Euros/person) and I was glad I did, as the commentary greatly enhanced my appreciation of the amazing art on display. I was there for almost 3 hours and still did not get to see all of it. I could really have stayed longer, but we were only in Milan for a few days and there was a lot to see. Don’t miss the spectacular view of the Duomo and the piazza from the top floor of the museum—it was icing on the cake!
Written July 26, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Frequently Asked Questions about Museo del Novecento

Museo del Novecento is open:
  • Tue - Wed 10:00 AM - 7:30 PM
  • Thu - Thu 10:00 AM - 10:30 PM
  • Fri - Sun 10:00 AM - 7:30 PM
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