This is an excellent gallery that tells the contribution of Italian artists to the history of art. It's a great way to get a comprehensive insight without being too much to take in, I would say you need between 1-2 hours but you could easily spend longer. The building itself is very impressive and much bigger than it first looks from the outside and is an excellent blend of old style Italian and modern architecture.
As you work your way around the building it has sections dedicated to key periods and the layout of the gallery forms a timeline enabling you to easily see how the various movements developed and what the key features are that linked them. The layout is also interesting and is not your usual collection of several floors of large, rectangular white (boring!) rooms and this helps make it more interesting to navigate (you also get an excellent view out over Duomo Square as a bonus) as well as give you time to really appreciate what is on show without ever feeling you need to rush as the gallery is not over crowded. There are even some pieces you can walk through.
I am lucky to live in London where we have many, many amazing galleries but I have to say this is one of the best I have ever visited. The whole collection is well thought out, interesting and has an excellent story to it; the (free) Warhol exhibition at the end was an added bonus. You do not even need to have a good grasp of art and it's history to enjoy this place as you learn so much as you go along and I left this gallery feeling truly invigorated, it was a definite highlight of my trip to Milan and I would definitely want to go again should I return. Had I have gone on my first day in Milan I think there’s a good chance I would have gone back for another visit before I left!
And the most amazing thing about all of this? The price – just €5! An absoluter bargain and a must-see for anyone visiting Milan. Highly recommended!
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