November 19, 2018

Museum of Instruments @ San Colombano, Bologna #BolognaWelcome

Musical instrument lovers wil enjoy the Tagliavini collection of instruments that is housed in the San Colombano church in Bologna. Seventy ancient instruments donated by Maestro Luigi Ferdinando Tagliavini are displayed with plenty of space in the church. There are many frescoes as well, including a 13th century mural of the crucifixion that has recently been uncovered in the crypt and has been attributed to Giunta Pisano.

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The instruments are mainly keyboard-based and include harpiscords, spinets, pianos and clavichords. Above is a harpsicord from Florence dating back to 1791, showing the extent of the painting and decoration expended on instruments then. That though is modern compared with the Pentagonal Spinet below.

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This Spinet dates from 1588. One of the many frescoes in the church can be seen above it.  The oratorio is filled with images from the life of Christ by artists such as Guido Reni and Francesco Albani, and is well worth a visit.

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The museum also has an ancient machine that was used to create the strings necessary for the instruments. This was used to make wire strings of differing thicknesses. It is intriguing to see this functional piece amongst the elegant drawing-room instruments that are also on view in the museum.

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The Giunta Pisano fresco is being restored, but it is still possible to view it when you walk down into the crypt. The whole church has been restored to a high standard and as the museum is relatively new it is still without hordes of visitors. This makes for a relaxing visit. Some of the instruments in the museum are still used for performances, so it is worth checking to see if you can time your visit to hear a recital.

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More information:

San Colombano

Collezione Tagliavini

via Parigi 5,

Bologna

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