Lovere: Accademia Tadini Gallery

In 1828, Earl Luigi Tadini opened the Gallery to the public in the palace on the lakeside promenade of Lovere to display his collection of works of art.

In 1828 Earl Luigi Tadini opened the Gallery to the public, set up in the neoclassical palazzo overlooking Lovere’s lakefront, to display his collection of works of art gathered during his lifetime.

Among the sculptures by Canova, masterpieces by painters from Veneto and Lombardy, Renaissance bronzes, porcelain from Meissen, Paris, Sevres and Naples that make the Tadini Academy unique, there are also antique objects with a special history.

How a collection is born

Earl Tadini’s archaeological collection was formed through purchases made during his travels in Italy in the last decade of the 18th century. Like many aristocrats on the Grand Tour, Earl Tadini visited Florence, Rome and Naples. It was in this city that his passion for antiquities, nurtured by the excavations at Herculaneum and Pompeii, was at its height.

The travellers on the ‘Grand Tour’ were attracted by the possibility of buying ‘Etruscan’ vases (as black-figure and red-figure pottery was called at the time); many merchants displayed ancient vases and bronzes and even some fakes to deceive the less experienced. Even the two large column-shaped kraters and the four small ointment jars turn out to be, on closer inspection, 18th-century artefacts.

The pottery purchased by Earl Tadini came mainly from southern Italy, in particular from Apulia. Worthy of mention are, for example, the bell-shaped kraters, the ointment jar and the red-figure wine cup with two handles from the 4th century B.C. and the two jugs that refer to the pottery found in the ancient city of Egnatia/Gnathia. In addition, there are some examples of Attic black-figure pottery, such as the ointment jar (6th-5th century BC) and the aryballos (small Corinthian pottery vase, third quarter of the 6th century BC).

There are also protohistoric bronze objects, mostly jewellery: armillas (bracelets) from central Italy and fibulae (brooches) from southern Italy.

Also part of the collection are signacula (bronze stamps) from Roman times – including that of the Emperor Commodus – originating in Central Italy, a group of small bronzes, mostly Italic or Roman, and marble sculptures, the latter mostly fragments integrated in stucco to take the form of a bust.

An ‘old-fashioned’ room, like the houses of Pompeii

To display the collection of antiquities, Earl Tadini asked the theatrical set designer Luigi Dell’Era, who had decorated the entire gallery, to imagine a setting similar to the paintings he had seen in Pompeii. Dell’Era, who had probably never been to Pompeii, painted the walls with motifs taken from the prints and illustrated books that Earl Tadini made available to him.

The fragile architecture is taken from the Antichità di Ercolano esposte (a collection of books published in Naples between 1757 and 1792), while the four vases with red figures on a black background take up the models published in Serie di pitture copiate da celebri vasi antichi, detti volgarmente etruschi (Venice 1801). The decoration is an interesting example of erudite and historicist archaeological taste rather than strict neoclassical observance.

Percorsi didattici

Le proposte educative dell’Accademia Tadini vogliono valorizzare il patrimonio custodito nel Gabinetto Archeologico presente nella più ampia collezione del Conte.

All’interno del Museo i partecipanti sono guidati dagli educatori alla conoscenza dei manufatti conservati e acquistati dal Tadini durante il viaggio in Italia, effettuato in diverse occasioni fra il 1793 e il 1797, con particolare riferimento al soggiorno nel Regno di Napoli, dove visitò gli scavi di Pompei ed Ercolano.

L’allestimento stesso della sala rimanda alla pittura parietale romana: Luigi Dell’Era, decoratore del Palazzo entro il 1826, infatti, ricreò una serie di quinte architettoniche ispirandosi alle incisioni conservate nella collezione del Conte.

Il Gabinetto rappresenta in maniera concreta l’interesse per l’antico non solo del Conte, ma in generale della società sette-ottocentesca:

– interesse che si trasforma in gusto per l’antico visibile anche attraverso altri oggetti della collezione, come il “servizio etrusco”, manifattura napoletana, esposto in una delle sale relative alla porcellana;

– interesse per la cultura classica che trova il suo apice attraverso l’esperienza del Grand Tour.

Per gli ospiti più piccoli l’esperienza della visita al museo si completa con un’attività laboratoriale che si svolge in un ambiente a loro dedicato: la Sala dei Colori.

I servizi educativi dell’Accademia Tadini sono sempre disponibili, a creare o modificare i percorsi proposti in collaborazione con gli insegnanti. Per informazioni, 349 4118779;

for the visit

Opening time

In October and April: Saturdays 3 p.m. -7p.m., Sundays and public holidays 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.; 3 p.m.-7 p.m.

Between October and April, the museum is open by appointment for guided tours or educational activities.

From May to September: Tuesdays to Fridays 3 p.m. – 7 p.m.; Saturdays 3 p.m. – 7 p.m.; Sundays and public holidays 10 a.m. – 12 p.m.; 3 p.m. – 7 p.m.

The gallery is closed on Mondays.


via Tadini 40 (Lungolago), Lovere, 24065 BG. Tel. 035 962780, Fax 035 4345158, E-mail Direzione, E-mail Segreteria Link al sito:

Other information

Guided tours
Guided tours for groups, also with interpreters, can be arranged by prior reservation and for a fee, with at least three days’ notice – also during the closing period.

For information: 349 4118779;

The nearest parking is in Via Giorgio Paglia (lakeside). The nearest equipped playground is in via Giorgio Paglia (lakeside).


Physical accessibility:

  • presence of elevators
  • possibility to use wheelchairs
  • possibility of using aids for manual mobility

Bathroom for the disabled

Seating / rest areas

Visually impaired:

  • tactile experience