Ambrosian art Gallery in Milan

Ambrosian art Gallery in Milan

Ambrosian Art Gallery is an amazing art gallery with great works of art located in a beautiful building. Leonardo and his drawings, Caravaggio, Botticelli, Titian and the works of many others can be admired here. It is certainly one of the best things Milan has to offer but with a price to match.

It is an art gallery with more than 1500 art pieces mostly depicting religious scenes. Among the most famous paintings in Pinacoteca Ambrosiana you will be able to enjoy masterpieces such as: “Portrait of a musician” (Ritratto di musico) by Leonardo, “Basket of Fruit” (La Canestra di frutta) by Caravaggio, “The portrait of a lady” by Giovanni Ambrogio De Predis, “Madonna del Padiglione” by Botticelli, “The adoration of the Magi” by Titian, “The Holy Family “ by Bernardino Luini, “Fire and Water” by Brueghel.

It was founded by Cardinal Federico Borromeo in 1618 when he decided to donate his collection to the Ambrosan Library, with the aim to allow everyone to admire these precious works of art. The original collection consisted of 172 paintings, however it grew over the time.
It hosts the biggest collection of the original Leonardo’s drawings, so called Codex Atlaticus (il Codice Atlantico) which are located at the end of the tour in a beautiful setting of the 17th century reading room of the library.

Leonardo’s Codex Atlaticus is exhibited in thematic exhibitions that change every three months. Those drawings are displayed to the public on two locations: Ambrosian Art Gallery and Sacrestia del Bramante (located within the complex of the church Santa Maria delle Grazie).
(!) It is prohibited taking photos in the gallery.

Interesting facts

  • Leonardo’s painting “Ritratto di musico” (Portrait of a Musician), which is exhibited in the Ambrosian Art Gallery is one of five portraits made by Leonardo and the only male portrait painted by this great artist.
  • The Cardinal commissioned a few copies of the greatest masterpieces of the Renaissance, among which also a copy of Leonardo’s Last Supper. He wanted the inscription on the painting: The original images of the Last Supper, at least those that remain, are fading and this copy was commissioned in order to somehow preserve Leonardo’s work, so that his masterpiece would never be permanently lost.
  • The glows that Napoleon Bonaparte wore during The Battle of Waterloo (when he lost against the Duke of Wellington) are also exhibited in the gallery.
  • There is even a case that keeps the lock of Lucrezia Borgia’s hair, in front of which many famous poets like Gabriele D’Annunzio and Lord Byron came to take inspiration. Lucrezia Borgia was the daughter of Pope Alexander VI; she was portrayed as a femme fatale in many artworks, novels and films.

Ticket prices for the Ambrosian Art Gallery in Milan
Ambrosian Art Gallery
Regular ticket price is: 15 Euros (€).
Reduced ticket price is: 10 Euros (€).
Sacrestia del Bramante
Regular ticket price is 10 Euros (€).
Reduced price- senior citizens over 65 years, and students under 26.
(!) The audio guide is around 3€ extra, but it will be useful since there is not much written next to the paintings, other than the name of the author  and the name of the art piece.

Working hours of the Ambrosian Art Gallery in Milan
Ambrosian Art Gallery (Pinacoteca Ambrosiana)
From Tuesday to Sunday working hours of the gallery are: 10:00-18:00h.
Sacrestia del Bramante
On Mondays working hours are: 9:30-13:00h; 14:00-18:00h.
From Tuesday to Sunday working hours are: 8:30-19:00h.