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100 years: the art of sculpture in Milan

Last updated on June 21, 2017

From 1815 to 1915 the city of Milan became internationally known as the main hub of the art of sculpture. In the city artists like Medardo Rosso, Adolfo Wildt and Camillo Pacetti contributed to the creation of the so-called “Scuola di Milano” (the school of Milan) which constituted for a century the benchmark for the art of sculpture.

The results of this tradition are spread throughout the city from the equestrian monument dedicated to the king Vittorio Emanuele in the Piazza del Duomo, to the Garibaldi’s and Verdi’s statues respectively in Largo Cairoli and in Piazza Buonarroti.

Other examples of statues belonging to this heritage can be seen on the Duomo Cathedral and on the tombstones of the Cimitero Monumentale (the monumental cemetery) of Milan.

In 2017 the city decided to pay its respectful tribute to the masters of sculpture through an exhibition currently on at the GAM, the Modern Art Gallery of Milan.

The art exhibit called “100 anni: Sculpture in Milan 1815 – 1915” features an impressive collection of statues that belong to the GAM’s sculptural patrimony from Neoclassicism to the beginning of the XXth Century.


A walk on the groud floor of the GAM allows the visitor to follow step by step the evolution of the themes explored by the Milanese carvers and sculptors from the beginning of the 19th Century to the belle epoque era.

The first hall of the museum features examples of the late Neoclassicism as perceived by Pompeo Marchesi, the sculptor that contributed to the realization of the bas relieves of the Arch of Peace.

In the second section of the collection the statues highlight how the masters were leaving the Neoclassical themes to embrace more popular topics. The romanticism expressed by these artworks was more popular among the wealthy art collectors of  19th century’s Milan.

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The core of the exhibit is the third set of statues created by the “artists who brought fortune and renown to Lombard sculpture through National and international exhibitions, affirming the importance of the School of Milan across Europe and beyond.” (

This section features plaster studies and casting tests of the most important monuments of the city which were all commissioned just after the unification of Italy. These artworks were aiming at celebrating the recently born Kingdom of Italy.

100 anni: Scultura a Milano 1815 – 1915

At the GAM – The Moder Art Gallery

Via Palestro 16 – 20121 Milano

Tuesday – Sunday, 9:00 – 17:30
(last admission 30 minutes before closing time)
Closed Monday

Museum Admission
• ticket € 5.00
• discount ticket  € 3.00

The access to the exhibition is included in the GAM entrance ticket.
Free admission every day one hour before closing  and every Tuesday from 14:00.


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