Palazzo D’Arco is a Neoclassical palace in Mantua, located in Piazza Carlo D’Arco. Today, the palace houses the Museum of Palazzo d’Arco, which displays the art collected over time by the D’Arco family.
The D’Arco family settled permanently in Mantua in 1740, and by the marriage of Francesco Alberto d’Arco with one of the Chieppo family’s heirs, they acquired the residence of the latter.
In 1784, Count Giovanni Battista Gherardo d’Arco commissioned the architect Antonio Colonna to rebuild the facade of the residence in Neoclassical style.
The result was a remarkable example of an aristocratic palace rich in furnishings and paintings, with a library, a naturalistic collection and a beautiful garden enclosed by an exedra.
In 1872, Francesco Antonio d’Arco bought from the Dalla Valle family two Renaissance buildings in the immediate vicinity of the palace, and incorporated them into the complex.
The stables were built on the left side of the palace, a construction which later was transformed into the Teatrino d’Arco, seat of the Francesco Campogalliani Theater Academy since 1946.
The last exponent of the family, who died in 1973, Giovanna dei Conti d’Arco Chieppio Ardizzoni, Marquise Guidi di Bagno, established the Arco Foundation, and the palace became a public museum.
The art collections inside the museum include furniture, ceramic, paintings and a large library. The library includes a collection of natural history books, a period kitchen and a collection of musical instruments.
The most beautiful work of art in the museum, located inside one of the buildings bought in 1872 by Francesco Antonio d’Arco, is Sala dello Zodiaco (Zodiac Room), frescoed by the Renaissance painter Giovanni Maria Falconetto in the early 16th century.
HOW TO GET THERE
Palazzo D’Arco is located about 550 meters away from the Mantua railway station. The closest bus stop, D’Arco, is right in front of the palace, on the bus Lines 4C, 4S, 4T, 6, 7E, 8, 12 and CC. To find the palace on foot, use the map below.