A cultural immersion
The collections of the civic museums of Turin, now managed by Fondazione Torino Musei, were opened to the public on 4 June 1863, with the aim both of documenting art history from the most remote eras to the present and of collecting and exhibiting Italian modern art.
This initial layout changed in the following decades, and in 1898 the collections of ancient art, now kept in Palazzo Madama, were separated from those of contemporary art: in so doing the Galleria d'Arte Moderna was born. The collections of Asian art formed the original nucleus of artwork today exhibited at the MAO.
With constant acquisitions, and thanks to the generous donations and bequests of private citizens, the collections today conserve than 150,000 works of art.
The charm of the East at the MAO, Antonello da Messina and the Decorative Arts at Palazzo Madama, the nineteenth century and the contemporary avant-garde at the GAM: more than 2000 years of history, a journey through the art and beauty that belongs to the humanity.
The GAM collections consist of over 45,000 works including paintings, sculptures, installations and photographs in addition to a rich collection of drawings and engravings and one of the most important European collections of artists' films and videos.
The MAO aims to achieve the broadest possible representation of artistic production from the many Asian countries. The museum houses the main cultural and artistic traditions of the Asian continent.
The MAO collections consist of nearly 2.300 works. They cover a period of time that starts from the Neolithic and reaches the beginning of the last century. Furthermore, 1.400 objects from the pre-Islamic period from the Iraqi excavations of Seleucia and Coche. The permanent exhibition area is divided into five galleries each devoted to a corresponding cultural area: South and Southeast Asia, China, Himalayan Region, Japan, Islamic countries.
Palazzo Madama collections
Since 1934 the Palace has hosted the Civic Museum's ancient art collections, with over 70,000 works including paintings, sculptures, illuminated manuscripts, majolica and porcelain, gold and silver, furnishings and textiles that illustrate European art from the Early Middle Ages to the Baroque period.