Rome’s classical beauty steeped in centuries of history never grows old. While the city is perhaps more synonymous with Michelangelo and Caravaggio, it’s also home to a thriving contemporary art’s scene looking to shed this outdated image.
Located north of the centre in the Flaminio neighbourhood is the Maxxi, the National Museum of Art from the 21st century. Designed by the late Zaha Hadid, the building itself is just as impressive as the art is houses. This architectural masterpiece is built on the ideas of flow and movement, where concrete, glass and steel structures lead you on a labyrinth adventure, making for a somewhat immersive experience where no two visits appear the same. It’s a bold antidote to Roman classicism, showcasing works on architecture, photography and installations. The current exhibitions include Paola Pivi’s World Record, whereby the 1999 Venice Biennale Leone d’Oro winner invites visitors to share a giant L-shaped mattress with strangers.
South of the city in the up-and-coming foodie heaven of Testaccio, the Macro is a centre for contemporary art. Built in what was once Europe’s largest slaughterhouse, the Macro aims to be more daring than the Maxxi and runs on a community vibe: the museum has started the experimental Macro Asile project (running until the end of 2019) which looks to forge a relationship between the city and art.
Art isn’t only for museums. Many local and international artists are also changing the cityscape, giving it an artistic renaissance that’s enough to compete with Michelangelo’s frescos. Many eagle-eyed visitors may have already spotted French street artist Space Invador‘s contemporary stamp on the Roman classics. Meanwhile, the city of Rome recently released a street art map with various itineraries, and the urban art organization MU.ro also offers walking tours in the Quadraro neighbourhood.
Luxair offers daily flights to Rome from €149 return including taxes, services included for no extra cost.
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