Sunday, December 28, 2008

Umbria Jazz Winter

One hour north of Rome in Orvieto, an easy less than hour train from Rome's Termini Station, is preparing to launch the 16th edition of Umbria Jazz Winter, which runs from Dec. 30 to Jan. 4.

This is the sister jazz festival to Umbria Jazz Perugia, which is an annual event in the college town.

For the 2008/2009 Umbria Winter Jazz headliners include Vaneese Thomas, Stefano Bollani and the Lionel Loueke Trio.

Visit WebVisionITaly for more video about Umbria Jazz.

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Friday, December 26, 2008

Pope's Urbi et Orbi 2008 - To the City to the World

Pope Benedict XVI waved to faithful during the "Urbi et Orbi" (to the City and to the World) message in St. Peter's square at the Vatican. The Pope addressed the economic gloom in his Christmas message.

Benedict XVI warned that the world was headed toward ruin if selfishness prevails over solidarity during tough times for both rich and poor nations.

'If people look only to their own interests, our world will certainly fall apart.'

Benedict dedicated part of his message to Africa, singling out Zimbabwe, where hunger is deepening and cholera is raging. He said that people there were 'trapped for too long in a political and social crisis which, sadly, keeps worsening'.

Suffering also continues in the war-ravaged Democratic Republic of Congo and in Darfur, Sudan, the Pope added.

And in Somalia, people are weighed down with 'interminable sufferings' as 'the tragic consequences of the lack of stability and peace,' he said.

Benedict said Roman Catholics had to 'do everything in our power to put an end to the suffering of these children'.

In the past year the Pope has repeatedly addressed the issue of sexual abuse of minors by Catholic clergy, but did not raise it in his Christmas homily.

Bless you my child: The Pope urged the world to stop abuse against children across the world during his Midnight Mass address

Benedict apologized for sexual abuse of minors by clergy and met victims during a July trip to Australia. He also met victims in the U.S. in April.

Pope Benedict said he hoped Christmas would bring hope to those suffering from war, terrorism, injustice and poverty and appealed for peace in Israel.

In his 'Urbi et Orbi' (to the city and the world) Christmas Day message, the Pope also turned his thoughts to some of the world's wealthiest countries, which have been hard hit by the world financial crisis.

'In each of these places may the light of Christmas shine forth and encourage all people to do their part in a spirit of authentic solidarity,' he said from the central balcony of St Peter's Basilica to tens of thousands of people below.

'If people look only to their own interests, our world will certainly fall apart.'

He acknowledged that 'an increasingly uncertain future is regarded with apprehension, even in affluent nations'.

In his greeting to Italians, he called for solidarity during a 'considerable economic crisis' that economists forecast could plunge Italy into its longest recession since World War Two.

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Thursday, December 25, 2008

Rome Walking Map: Rome's Fashion Boutiques Shopping Guide Walking Map

Rome Italy: Shopping Guide Walking Map to Rome's Fashion Boutiques

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Map to Rome's fashion boutiques, a Rome insiders guide to shopping in Rome. Visit the Made in Italy brands around Via Condotti, Via del Governo Vecchio and Via dei Coronari.

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Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Italian food producers and shops offer new way to fight Mafia

ROME, Italy -- Of all the ways to fight the Mafia, having pasta for dinner isn't usually one of them. But now, that's exactly what Italians can do to help beat organized crime.

A shop in central Rome is offering an array of ''anti-Mafia'' food -- including pasta, wine, olive oil, chick peas, and tomato sauce -- all produced on land recently seized from the Sicilian Mafia and handed over to farmers.

''We have transformed the fight against the Mafia,'' said Antonio Dell'Olio, an anti-Mafia activist who helps promote the shop's goods. ''I can eat anti-Mafia. Anti-Mafia is in my own life.''

Italian law allows authorities to assign property confiscated from organized crime groups to cooperatives, social workers, and volunteers.

In the Sicilian capital of Palermo, a consortium called Libera Terra, or ''Free Land,'' turned agricultural fields formerly devoted to illegal activities into a profitable and legal business.

The label on the food produced there even advertises ''the lawful taste of Sicily.''

The Libera Terra consortium produces the food on the same land once controlled by Toto Riina, a top Mafia boss jailed for a string of murders in the 1990s. That land is in Corleone, the Sicilian town whose name became famous in the Godfather movies.

Click for more Italian food producers and shops offer new way to fight Mafia.

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Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Rome - Culture, Museum, Things to Do January 2009

Roma Gospel Festival
20 - 31 Dec 2008 (annual)
Auditorium Parco della Musica
The Auditorium Parco della Musica hosts the Roma Gospel Festival, a 10-day blues event directed by Mario Ciampà and featuring some of the best spiritual and gospel music groups from the USA… More

New Year's Eve in Rome
31 Dec 2008 - 1 Jan 2009 (annual)
Piazza del Popolo
New Year's Eve in Rome takes place all over the city's squares, although Piazza del Popolo is where celebrations are bigger and better with fireworks, rock and classical music concerts lasting… More

One Hundred Nativity Scenes
27 Nov 2008 - 6 Jan 2009 (annual)
Sala del Bramante
One Hundred Nativity Scenes is an annual Christmas crib exhibition, held at the Sala del Bramante within the famous Piazza del Popolo in Rome. More

Christmas at the Auditorium
6 Dec 2008 - 6 Jan 2009 (annual)
Auditorium Parco della Musica
Rome's Auditorium Parco della Musica organises Christmas at the Auditorium, a month-long celebration of music, puppet shows, gastronomy labs, a market and other family-oriented events. More

Piazza Navona Christmas Market
26 Nov 2008 - 6 Jan 2009 (annual)
Piazza Navona
Rome's Piazza Navona hosts a traditional Christmas market, complete with Santa Claus, nativity scenes and stalls selling Christmas goodies, including endless representations, in all shapes and… More

Blessing of the Animals
Jan 2009 (annual)
Chiesa di Sant'Eusebio
Cat-chasing, unmarried fornication and keeping neighbours up at night certainly won't earn Rex a place in doggie heaven. Bring him to Rome's St Eusebio Church during the Feast of St Anthony… More

Roman Purim
27 Jan 2009 (annual)
Roman Purim, a Roman-Jewish holiday also called "Lead Mo'ed", celebrates with prayers a miraculous event that took place in 1793 (5553 in the Hebrew calendar). In the evening, Rome's Jewish… More

Strike Strands Rome Air Travelers

Holiday travelers are scrambling to find flights out of Rome's Leonardo Da Vinci airport thanks to latest round of labour unrest at Italian airline Alitalia.

The baggage handlers and maintenance staff walked off the job Monday to protest negotiations with CAI, the group of investors that plans to relaunch a smaller, more efficient Alitalia next month.

The strike is now in its second day, which which has grounded about 150 flights in two days. Workers at the ground services unit at Fiumicino airport walked off their jobs on Monday to hold union talks about their futures when an Italian business consortium known as CAI relaunches the troubled carrier next year

The walkout stranded holiday travelers, many of whom were still sleeping on airport benches or standing on long lines Tuesday morning waiting for flights out.

Alitalia went bankrupt earlier this year. Its most valuable assets were bought by the business consortium CAI, a group of Italian businessman who own much if Italy's industry, which plans to merge the airline with a domestic rival AirOne.

The airline's bankruptcy commissioner posted an advertisement in newspapers, including the Financial Times, on Tuesday announcing the sale of 46 Alitalia planes and asking for expressions of interest by Jan 29.

For more about Italy visit, the only television network about Italy in English.

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Sunday, December 21, 2008

Rome Restaurant-Trattoria in Rome's Centro Storico-Map to Restaurants in Rome

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Map of Rome - updates happening all the time. Bookmark this blog page so you may check back often for new restuarants, caffes, shopping, and things to do in Rome.

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Saturday, December 20, 2008

Giordano Bruno by Ingrid D. Rowland

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Ancient Artifacts Recovered in Rome

ROME - ( Italian authorities report seizing a rare 9th century three-faced marble head of the Greek goddess Hecate from a store in Rome's historic center after it was stolen by thieves last year.

The ancient artifact was recovered in Rome by Italian Police.

The bust of Hecate, the Greek goddess linked to witchcraft and the afterlife who is usually depicted with three heads, was found in a store near Rome's Campo de' Fiori square.

It had been missing since June 2007, when thieves made off with it from a Roman house after drugging the owner's family with sedatives.

Italy has carried out a drive to trace stolen artifacts, especially those from archaeological sites.

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Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Delta Air Lines to Begin Nonstop Service Between Detroit and Rome, Italy

Delta Airlines Detroit Rome
Delta putting pressure to Colaninno's Alitalia CAI investor group - Toronto and Mid West Routes?

ATLANTA, Dec 16, 2008 (GlobeNewswire via COMTEX)-- Delta Air Lines' customers can now book convenient nonstop flights between Detroit Metro Airport and Rome's Leonardo da Vinci-Fiumicino Airport for service beginning on June 4, 2009*.

The flight will make travel to the Eternal City more accessible through Detroit's 115 easy connections and will complement Delta's existing nonstop daily service between Rome and Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport and twice daily nonstop from New York's John F. Kennedy-JFK International Airport.

"...Delta is pleased to add nonstop connections for customers in Detroit and across the United States to Rome -- Italy's leading destination," said Bob Cortelyou, Delta's senior vice president-Network Planning. "We have strategically scheduled flight times between our Detroit hub and Rome to ensure optimal connections."

Delta's subsidiary Northwest will operate the service in cooperation with Northwest's joint venture partner, KLM Royal Dutch Airlines, using Airbus 330 aircraft with 298 seats -- 34 in business class and 264 in economy. The airline's A330s are equipped with World Business Class lie-flat seats featuring a privacy canopy, 60 inches of space between seats, and personal laptop computer power. Customers traveling in both the A330's business and economy cabins enjoy on-demand in-flight entertainment with a wide selection of movies, games and on-board shopping.

For more about Italy visit

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Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Giro d'Italia 2009 route announced.

Giro d'Italia route announced

The 2009 Giro d'Italia will start with a team time trial in Venice and finish with an individual time trial in Rome, organisers have said.

The route for the race, which celebrates its centenary this year, was unveiled on this weekend in Venice. The cycling event will take place from 9-31 May and include five mountain stages and a time trial on the Ligurian coast.

The race usually finishes in Milan, but for the centennial event it will reach its climax in the capital. Milan will host the finish of the ninth stage and Mount Vesuvius in Naples will be the site of a mountain stage two days before the finish in Rome. The route will also pass through several points connected with the Giro's history, and cover many of Italy's biggest cities - Venice, Milan, Florence, Bologna and Naples. It will also venture into the French Alps during the 10th stage, which will begin and finish in Italy.

This year's winner Alberto Contador announced in October that he would not be taking part in next year's event but former winners Ivan Basso, Danilo Di Luca, Damiano Cunego and Gilberto Simoni are set to race again.

The only question remains is will Lance Armstrong bike race in 2009? Planning on travel to Italy, check the Giro out May and June 2009 on your 2009 spring holiday in Italy.

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Monday, December 15, 2008

Rome Flooding: Acqua Alta High Water Returns?

ROME, Dec. 15 - Rome was spared major damage Saturday when flood waters peaked without bursting the banks of the Tiber River.

Monday, however,
Civil protection officials in Italy say they are concerned a major storm in the region today could prompt more dangerous flooding.

The Italian news agency ANSA said as the third major pre-winter storm ravaged parts of Italy Monday, concern over increased flooding along the Aniene River increased.

The Aniene temporarily overflowed during earlier inclement weather, leaving several of Rome's streets flooded.

The river's level dropped during the weekend but the renewed storm had that level rising steadily Monday...

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Sunday, December 14, 2008

Fast train launched between Italian cities

Sunday 14th December, 2008

A new high-speed train link has been launched between the northern Italian cities of Milan and Bologna.

The fast train will cut travel time and will be extended to Rome next year.

Italy’s three other fast train routes will be complemented by the new service, which begins on Sunday.

When the Rome leg is completed, travel time between Milan, Italy's financial center, and Rome will be cut to three-and-a-half hours.

For more about Italy travel visit

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Saturday, December 13, 2008

Alitalia leaves the nest: Italian Business Men New Guardians

ROME, Dec 12 (Reuters) - An Italian investor consortium buying Alitalia formally took possession of the airline's assets on Friday in another step towards closing the long-awaited deal, said Roberto Colaninno, president of the CAI investor group.

CAI's purchase of Alitalia is said to be 427 million euros ($567 million).

CAI, a group of Italian businessmen, takes control after opposition from employees and others failed....

The Anpav and Avia unions representing flight attendants agreed on Friday to join the major unions in backing the deal, though CAI had effectively ignored their protests so far and begun individually hiring pilots and flight staff.

CAI on Thursday said it had also finalised the purchase of smaller airline Air One, whose operations will be folded into those of Alitalia as part of the bid to relaunch it. ($1=.7537 euros) (Editing by Greg Mahlich)

CAI purche of Alitalia for $600 million is far less than the $1.5 billion reported in press. Maybe the CAI group assumed $1 billion in debt.

Either way, nice that Alitalia will be restructured and readied to compete against the world class Gulf State airlines funded by sovereign wealth funds.

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Tren Italia Vs. Alitalia: Are Italy's Business Men Going to Really Compete on Rome Milan Route?

ROME, Dec 11 (Reuters) - A high-speed train service between Rome and Milan will cut travel time by 25 percent to three hours next year....

The railways aims to corner 60 percent of the market for travel by any method over the route over the next two years, the head of Italy's state railways Ferrovie dello Stato CEO Mauro Moretti told Italian television.

The train service announcement comes the same day a group of Italian businessmen take over national airline Alitalia, which runs a Rome-Milan air route Ciampino to Linate...

(Writing by Deepa Babington; Editing by David Holmes)

Question: Tren Italia Vs. Alitalia: Are Italy's Business Men Going to Compete on Rome Milan Route by train vs by plane?

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Friday, December 12, 2008

Rare artifacts uncovered in Roman baths dig

Rare artifacts uncovered in Roman baths dig
Wed Dec 10, 2008 11:53pm IST

By Deepa Babington

ROME (Reuters Life!) - Excavations at an ancient Roman villa and bath complex in the outskirts of Rome have unearthed a wealth of surprisingly well-preserved artifacts, including the marble head of a Greek god, archaeologists said on Wednesday.

"It's very unusual to find such well-preserved remains in Rome because most of the sites have usually been plundered already and the artifacts stolen," Dora Cirone, an archaeologist on the dig, said at a news conference to announce the findings.

"Luckily, much of the remains here were found buried below floor level, and no one had laid their hands on it."

Of note:
  • The site is Villa delle Vignacce, near Ciampino airport southwest of Rome;
  • First explored by archaeologists in 1780 who found statues that are now in the Vatican museum;
  • excavations began two years ago, revealing residence attached to thermal bath complex dating to 1st century A.D.;
  • archaeologists said they had also uncovered artifacts including: fragments of columns, floor slabs and the head of a marble statue believed to represent either the Greek divinity of Zeus Serapide or Asclepius, the god of medicine and healing;
  • Discovery of special importance is colored-glass mosaic of leaves and vegetation lining the inside of a vault.
For more on well preserved ancient artifact sites to see authentic ancient Roman lifestyle click Campania TV and Naples TV on, the only Internet video about Italy.

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Thursday, December 11, 2008

Rome Video: Caffes of Rome

Caffes of Rome video brought to you by the Italian Broadcasting Company Italy travel video, visit, the only English telly network TV about Rome in English.

Caffes of Rome were made famous by Fellini but of course the Roman intellecuals and political class has been cooking up ideas in caffes since the early 1800s in Rome.

Click WebVisionItaly's Rome channel.

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Monday, December 8, 2008

Book about Rome: Rome, The Eternal City

The Smiles of Rome by Susan Cahill (2005)

Cafe Life Rome by Joe Wolff (2002)

A Thousand Bells at Noon-A Roman's Guide to the Streets and Pleasures of His Native City by G. Franco Romagnoli (2002)

Roma-The Smart Travelers Guide to the Eternal City by Paul Hofmann (1993)

The Seasons of Rome-A Journal by Paul Hofmann (1997)

City of the Soul-A Walk in Rome by William Murray (2002)

As The Romans Do-The Delights, Drama, and Daily Diversions of Life in the Eternal City by Alan Epstein (2000)

Playing Away-Roman Holidays by Michael Mewshaw (1988)

The Vatican's Women, Female Influence at the Holy See by Paul Hofmann (2000)

Rome Antics by David Maculay

Notes From A Roman Terrace by Joan Marble (2003)

Michelangelo and the Pope's Ceiling by Ross King (2003)

Basilica, the Splendor and the Scandal: Building St. Peter’s by R. A. Scotti (2006)

Cicero-The Life and Times of Rome's Greatest Politician by Anthony Everitt (2001)

Rome Guides:

Top 10 Guide to Rome by Sharri Whiting

Rome City Map by Dorling Kindersley Travel Guides

Trattorias of Rome, Florence and Venice by Maureen B Fant

Rome Insideout by The Map Group

Great Sleeps Italy, Florence, Rome, Venice by Sandra Gustafson (2002)

Access Rome by Richard Saul Wurman

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Sunday, December 7, 2008

Book about Rome: Rome From Its Founding to the Present Day: a Quartet

Rome From Its Founding to the Present Day: a Quartet

Editor’s comment: Do read these books on Rome in the order presented. Enjoy them as you would a good grappa, slowly. Warning: once you start reading you will be unable to stop. And you will be unable to control the urge to go to Rome and wander about Ancient-Christian-Renaissance Rome as the Romans do.

1-Roma, the Novel of Ancient Rome by Steven Saylor (2007) -
Tells the story of Rome’s first thousand years, 1000 BC to 1BC, from the salt gatherers at the mouth of the Tiber to Caesar Augustus.

2-Lavinia by Ursula K. LeGuin (2008) –
Simply a masterpiece. Tells the story of Lavinia, princess of Latium, who, with pious Aeneas, is destined to found Rome. Their descendants ruled for 15 generations.

3-The Aeneid by Virgil (29-19 BC), Translation, Robert Fagles; Introduction, Bernard Knox (2006) –
Modern verse translation of the ancient Roman epic of goddess-born Aeneas, who, following his fate, fled from the burning Troy and founded Rome.

4-The Secrets of Rome, Love and Death in the Eternal City by Corrado Augias (2007) –
The 15 chapters cover 2700 years of Roman life. Fascinating tales presented in an interesting fashion: “The Most Beautiful Lady of Rome” tells the story of Lucretia Borgia; “The Other Michelangelo,” of Caravaggio.

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Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Rome Culture, Museums, and Festivals December 2008

"De Chirico e il museo" (a retrospective of this classical artist) and "From Rembrandt to Vermeer", a rich overview of the work of major Flemish painters. Also worth a visit is the show in Palazzo Venezia of another painterly genius, Giuseppe Modica, and the exhibition of Basil Theocharakis, master of sea art. This is the last opportunity to catch painting-photography exhibition "Visions of the Grand Tour from the Hermitage", that brings together works by German, Italian and Dutch artists.

What about music? This month check out the live concerts by the likes of Claudio Baglioni (on his "Q.P.G.A." tour), Giorgia, Zucchero, Cesare Cremonini, Mario Venuti and Gianluca Grignani, but also the traditional Christmas concerts, such as those of the buzzing 'Gospel Festival' and the many concerts on at the city Auditorium.

On the classical front, some great operas can be seen in Rome this month, such as "Othello" and "The Barber of Seville"; great ballets such as "The Nutcracker"; but also many concerts: by the city's Philharmonic Orchestra, by the Accademia di Santa Cecilia, at the Gonfalone venue, in Borromini's Sacristy... And don't miss "Notre Dame de Paris", the mega operatic event by Riccardo Cocciante.

It's time to find out what Rome's theatres and stages have in store for us this month. For the younger set, there's the fantastical "Mickey Mouse Magic Show", the musicals "Poveri ma belli (Poor but beautiful)" and "High School Musical", and two classical Neapolitan dramas, "Miseria e nobiltà" and "Quaranta ma non li dimostra" with Luigi De Filippo.

We can't wait to see Francesca Reggiani in "Questioni di prestigio" and Anna Marchesini's spirited performance in "Giorni felici".

And it's not over yet: you can still catch the last few days of the "Romaeuropa Festival", the guided tours of the Appia Antica park, the many events being hosted at the auditorium for Christmas under the "Natale all'Auditorium" banner, and last but not least, the traditional Christmas rituals, both religious (such as the masses in St Peter's Square) or the pagan (such as the Christmas market in Piazza Navona)...

Musei Capitolini - Palazzo dei Conservatori, Sala degli Arazzi. Piazza del Campidoglio, 1. Info 060608
Until 6 Jan 2009: Ospitando... l'Apollo di Mantova (Hosting the Apollo of Mantua)
This exhibition is part of the "Ospitando..." series that encourages the circulation - in the literal sense of the term - of art, i.e. the exchange of works between different museums in different cities. The Capitoline museums host this refined sculpture - a marvellous marble Apollo probably dating back to Hadrian's era - which is on loan from the Palazzo Ducale in Mantua for a limited time. Tue-sun h9-10. €8, reduced €6 (the ticket includes entry into the exhibition, "The invention of the Imperial Fora. Demolition and archaeological excavations: 1924-1940)

Scuderie del Quirinale, via XXIV Maggio, 16. Info 0639967500
Until 11 Jan 2009: Giovanni Bellini
One of the most famous Italian painters of the 15th century, Giovanni Bellini (a.k.a. as Giambellino) is celebrated in this exhibition. His contribution to the development of painting techniques was considerable, and ranged from the employment of tempera paints to his very particular use of oils in the manner typical of Flemish painters, creating soft tones and amazing light and colour effects. About 70 of Giambellino's works (including his famous 'Baptism of Christ') are displayed in the Scuderie del Quirinale exhibition venue and will be followed by shows featuring the masterpieces of Titian and Giorgione.

GNAM Galleria Nazionale d'Arte Moderna, viale delle Belle Arti, 131. Info 06322981
Until 25 Jan 2009: De Chirico e il museo (De Chirico and the museum)
Thirty years after the death of the great painter from Volos, a retrospective is dedicated to the classicist and inventor of metaphysical painting. For De Chirico art was a compass with which to orient oneself in the sea of emotion. About 30 paintings and drawings illustrate the relationship between the artist and classical heritage. Particularly worth mentioning are the works that are clearly influenced by Michelangelo, Titian, Guido Reni, or Rubens.

Complesso del Vittoriano, via San Pietro in Carcere. Info 066780664
Until 8 Feb 2009: Picasso Arlecchino 1917 - 1937
A unique exhibition curated by Yve-Alain Bois shows 180 pieces by Pablo Picasso, on loan from the Centre Pompidou in Paris and the Museu Picasso in Barcelona. Oils, etchings and drawings tell of the artist's life and work between 1917 and 1937 - a period that came after the cold melancholy of the blue period, the pale cheerful tones of the pink period, the determined lines of the African period and the intuition and decomposition of the Cubist period - when the Spanish artist was in a discovery phase in which different styles and inspirations converge and were transformed into something free from the constraints and labels of critics.

Colosseo, piazza del Colosseo
Until 15 Feb 2009: Rovine e rinascite nell'arte italiana (Ruins and rebirths in Italian art)
This exhibition focuses on the themes of recovering and preserving the artistic and natural landscape of the nation. These 60 works tell of the various measures and developments that Italy has developed - decrees, laws, private and collective actions - to safeguard its most beautiful sites and treasures. The exhibition is divided into six sections - "The origins of conservation", "Italian Unity and National education", "20th century progress", "Fascist propaganda and war", "The development of conservation principles" and "Counter-trends: conservation today" - and among the many works on show are the Birth of Bacchus from Budapest, the statue of the Goddess Niobe from the Villa dei Quintili and fragments of the Metopes of Selinunte sculptures from Palermo. h8,30-16,30. €11, reduced €6,50

Museo del Corso, via del Corso, 320. Info 0667862098
Until 15 Feb 2009: Da Rembrandt a Vermeer. Valori civili nella pittura fiamminga e olandese del ’600 (From Rembrandt to Vermeer. Civil values in 17th century Flemish and Dutch painting)
Rubens' "Landscape with a hanged man" and Rembrandt's "The money changer" are just two of the artistic gems on show in this exhibition curated by Bernd Lindemann, the head of Berlin's Gemaldegalerie. This prestigious museum has loaned some 55 masterpieces from the so-called "Golden Age" (17th century) of Flemish painting for the exhibition. The works on show the wealth of this cultural period through landscapes, portraits, domestic interiors and the representation of sacred themes.

Galleria Nazionale d'arte antica in Palazzo Barberini - Sala del Caravaggio. Via delle IV Fontane, 13. Info 064824184 e 064814591
Until 23 Feb 2009: Un'ospite misteriosa a Palazzo Barberini (A mysterious guest in Palazzo Barberini)
The painting of Saint Catherine of Alexandria can be seen in the stupendous Sala del Caravaggio and is on loan from the Musée des Beaux Arts in Nantes (which in return has borrowed Simon Vouet's 'Buona Ventura' for their own venue). This work is by Roman artist, Angelo Caroselli, a pioneer of naturalism whose work often had a philosophical vein and overtones of witchcraft. Catherine, the patron saint of philosophers, with her jewellery and sumptuous clothing, evokes pagan priestesses, and in the painting she is imbued in a highly colourful and theatrical atmosphere and displayed alongside "the Holy Family during the Flight to Egypt", a work by the same artist.

Chiostro del Bramante, via della Pace. Info 0668809035
Until 5 Apr 2009: Giulio Cesare. L’uomo, le imprese, il mito (Julius Caesar. The man, the enterprise, the myth)
An exceptional and exclusive event coming up in Rome is the first show dedicated to a quintessential figure in Roman history. Julius Caesar was the link between the republic and the empire, a charismatic man and an extraordinary leader. A series of valuable archaeological finds - sculptures, mosaics, frescoes, jewels, gems, coins - are on show, as are sculptures and paintings by major artists like Hayez, Tiepolo and Rubens that tell the story of Caesar's life. Tue-fri h10-20; sat-sun h10-21. €10, reduced €7

Musei di Roma, info 060608
From 8 Dec to 5 Jan 2009: Apertura straordinaria dei musei (Late museum openings for Christmas)
The city's museums will stay open late during the Christmas holidays. Venues participating in the initiative: Musei Capitolini, Centrale Montemartini, Mercati di Traiano, Museo dell'Ara Pacis, Museo Barracco, Museo della Civiltà Romana, Museo delle Mura, Villa di Massenzio, Museo di Roma, Museo Napoleonico, MACRO, Museo Carlo Bilotti, Museo Pietro Canonica, Museo di Roma in Trastevere, Musei di Villa Torlonia, Planetario e Museo Astronomico, Museo Civico di Zoologia www

Complesso del Vittoriano, via San Pietro in Carcere
Until 8 Dec: Luciano Pavarotti. L'uomo che emozionò il mondo (Luciano Pavarotti. The man who moved the world)
Photos, videos and other souvenirs pay tribute to one of the strongest and most famous voices on the planet: that of Luciano Pavarotti. This exhibition, which was curated by second wife Nicoletta Mantovani and Alessandro Nicosia, includes audio materials, stage costumes, posters and librettos and traces the extraordinary career of the man known as Big Luciano. His incredible voice accompanies us as we make out way through this exhibition and further improve our knowledge of this incomparable tenor from Modena.

Palazzo Venezia, via del Plebiscito, 118. Info 066780131; 06699941
Until 14 Dec: Giuseppe Modica. Roma e la città riflessa (Giuseppe Modica. Rome and the city reflected)
One of the most interesting contemporary painters in Italy - Giuseppe Modica - has once again chosen the capital as the place to present a series of works dedicated to the theme of the city reflected. Reflection is what this artist's poetics is all about. For years he has had a philosophical perspective, striving beyond objectivity and looking for the evocative core of the matter. 40 never-before-seen works - dream-like Roman landscapes, views and monuments. Tue-sun h8,30-19,30. Admission free

Braccio di Carlo Magno, Città del Vaticano. Info 0668193064
Until 6 Jan 2009: Pio XII. L'uomo e il pontificato (1876-1958) (Pius XII. The man and the papacy 1876-1958)
An exhibition that explores the figure and life of Eugenio Pacelli, better known to the world as Pope Pius XII. The show is divided into nine different sections, dedicated to the intimate and public phases of the pope's life: his childhood, his education, his family life and background, his spiritual journey, his cultural grounding, his time as a priest and finally, his 19 years as pope.

Palazzo delle Esposizioni, via Nazionale, 194. Info 0639967500
Until 6 Jan 2009: Etruschi. Le antiche metropoli del Lazio Etruscans. The ancient metropolises of Lazio)
Mario Morelli and Anna Maria Moretti curated this exhibition dedicated to the Etruscan culture and civilisation of Lazio, which left manifold traces in the urban fabric, rituals and traditions of its main settlements: Veio, Cerveteri, Tarquinia and Vulci, all have a particular spirit and character - Veio, for example, is a great ceramics centre; Cerveteri is famous for its necropolis; Vulci is famous for its white stone; and Tarquinia boasts over 100 stupendous frescoed tombs.

Palazzo delle Esposizioni, via Nazionale, 194. Info 0639967500
Until 6 Jan 2009: Bill Viola
"The Crossing", "The Veiling", "Silent Mountain" and "The Locked Garden" are just some of the works we can admire in this exhibition dedicated to video art guru Bill Viola. His creations are the fruit of a spiritual life that finds nourishment in Buddhism, Christianity, Sufism and Mysticism and that explores the universal moments of human life - birth, death, nature. Videotapes, video-installations, sound landscapes, video performances and electronic projects lead us into a sensorial experience that immerses us in a world of pure sound and imagery.

Palazzo Venezia - Sala Regia, Sala delle Battaglie e Sala del Mappamondo. Via del Plebiscito, 118. Info 0669994319
Until 11 Jan 2009: Basil Theocharakis - Pittura: 1952 – 2008 (Basil Theocharakis - Painting: 1952 - 2008)
The first Italian retrospective dedicated to this poet of the sea, Greek artist Basil Theocharakis. Divided into different sections, such as abstract works, paintings dedicated to 'Mount Athos', or depicting 'Clouds', 'Marshes', stupendous 'Landscapes', 'Marine landscapes' and 'Built-up areas', this exhibition explores the themes that inhabit the artist's watercolours. His pieces appear enchanted by the world around us and imbued with a desire to record it in all its authentic essence, through great details, brushstrokes that are both thick and thin, and the use of fresh and bright colours. Tue-sun h9-19. Admission free

Casa dei Teatri, Villa Doria Pamphilj - Villino Corsini. Largo 3 giugno 1849, angolo via di San Pancrazio - ingresso Arco dei Quattro Venti. Info 060608; 0645460693
Until 11 Jan 2009: Pupazzi con rabbia e sentimento. Una mostra di arte e di teatro di Dario Fo e Franca Rame (Puppets of anger and sentiment. A show of art and theatre by Dario Fo and Franca Rame)
"Grabbing hold of a canvas or a piece of cardboard, starting to draw, throwing down colours and scratching a freshly painted board is the only way of resolving a complex or abstruse scene or staging dilemma." So said theatrical supremo and creative powerhouse Dario Fo before this exhibition was inaugurated. Franca Rame, Fo's wife, helped put together this amazing collection of watercolours, tempera paintings, oils on canvas and etchings created by the eclectic Lombard artist with major enthusiasm ever since childhood. By making "una frappàta di belle figure (a smattering of beautiful figures)" as Fo said himself, or the puppets of the exhibition's title, he started to take his first steps in the world of figurative art, slowly developing a highly visual language that he considered to be the key to his creative originality. Deepen your knowledge of an artist who speaks through the language of colour through these 100 paintings, backdrops, stage costumes and wall hangings. Tue-sun h10-17. Admission free

Musei di Villa Torlonia, Casino dei Principi. Via Nomentana, 70. Info 060608
Until 11 Jan 2009: Scuola Romana. Artisti a Roma tra le due guerre (Roman School. Artists in Rome between the two wars)
After periods spent at the museums and Italian cultural institutes of Tirana, Belgrade, Fiume and Bucharest, this exhibition finally comes to Rome. This show examines the period between the two wars, a period that was culturally very lively. About fifty works by the biggest names in figurative art - such as Guttuso, Mafai and Scipione - and by some lesser-known artists - such as Francalancia, Capogrossi and Cavalli (self-portrait) - are on display. The show is divided into three sections. The first is dedicated to the artist and the creative process; the second is centred on the perceptual subjectivity of places as seen by the individual artists; the third examines the body and its physicality. Tue-sun h9-16,30. €9, reduced €5,50

Casa di Goethe, via del Corso, 18. Info 0632650412
Until 18 Jan 2009: Italiani a Weimar. Disegni italiani dal XVI al XIX secolo dalle collezioni della Klassik Stiftung Weimar (Italians in Weimar. Italian drawings from the 16th to the 19th centuries from the Klassik Stiftung Weimar collections)
This exhibition shows works on loan from the Klassik Stiftung Weimar collection and includes pieces by Giorgio Vasari, Perino del Vaga, the Cavalier d'Arpino, Annibale Carracci, Guercino, Salvator Rosa, Bartolomeo Pinelli and Giovanni Volpato... For many of the paintings coming back to Rome is particularly significant since it represents a return home: the Eternal City is, in fact, the subject of many of these works, such as "The apotheosis of Romulus" by Domenico Maria Canuti. Curator: Ursula Verena Fischer Pace. Tue-sun h10-18. €4, reduced €3

Museo Nazionale di Castel Sant'Angelo, Lungotevere di Castello, 50
Until 25 Jan 2009: Loghi d'Italia - storie dell'arte di eccellere (Loghi d'Italia - the history of the art of excelling)
This exhibition tells the story of four major Italian firms - Amarelli, Peroni, Lagostina and Perugina - and is an event that advertising aficionados will be loath to miss. "Loghi d'Italia" uses photos and objects to tell the story of big Italian firms, the products they sell and the people involved in making them who they are today. Special mention must go to the documentaries by Antonioni and Bertolucci and pieces by artists such as Guttuso and Dalì. Tue-sun h9-19. €8

Fondazione Memmo - Palazzo Ruspoli, via del Corso, 418. Info 066874704
Until 1 Feb 2009: Jean-Michel Basquiat. Fantasmi da scacciare (Jean-Michel Basquiat. Shadows that haunt)
The poet of graffiti art made his name in the carriages of New York's metro trains and later in the hippest art galleries. The hard-living and fast-dying Basquiat ? who boasted collaborations with the iconic Andy Warhol ? painted a dark and fragmented urban humanity and created creatures impregnated by an atmosphere of social disintegration. His artistic language was strong and pure, his perspective was philosophical, and his message was as withering as the signature he invented (SAMO - Same old Shit) to sign off his work... Just like his many fans and collectors around the world, you too will fall in love with the "shadows that haunt" the works of this wild artist! Tue-thu h10-19,30; fri-sun h10-20,30. €10, reduced €8

Museo dell'Ara Pacis, lungotevere in Augusta, info 060608
Until 22 Feb 2009: Bruno Munari
Ten years after his death, the city of Rome celebrates this great Milanese artist and designer who affected the language of modernity deeply, through a series of initiatives, activities, mini-exhibitions, workshops for children, and above all a rich display of his work. Sculptures and graphic pieces will allow us to get to know this refined designer, who made experimentation and intuition his distinctive traits. Tue-sun h11-19. €5

Museo Nazionale di Castel Sant'Angelo, Lungotevere di Castello, 50
Until 22 Feb 2009: Artisti a Roma - Ritratti ed autoritratti, scultori ed architetti dal Rinascimento al 700 (Artists in Rome - Portraits and self-portraits, sculptors and architects from the Renaissance to the 18th century)
"Papi in posa", "La Porpora Romana" and "Il Principe Romano" are all shows dedicated to the art of portraiture, as is "Artisti a Roma". This show examines the art of portaiture and self-portraiture and highlights the importance of the pose adopted by the sitter, their way of thinking and their social status. Among the many works on display are the bronze bust of Michelangelo by Giambologna, self-portraits by Bernini and Vanvitelli, and a heretofore unseen portrait of the poet Metastasio by Martin van Meytens. Tue-sun h9-19

Musei di San Salvatore in Lauro, piazza Di San Salvatore In Lauro, 15. Info 066865493
Until 22 Feb 2009: Visioni del Grand Tour dall'Ermitage (1640-1880). Paesaggi e gente d'Italia nelle collezioni russe - Visions of the Grand Tour from the Hermitage (1640-1880). The landscapes and people of Italy in the Russian collections
Sergej Androsov, Vladimir Matveev and Lorenzo Zichichi are the curators of this show that brings many works to Italy for the first time. A major thanks is owed to the Russian collectors who gathered paintings and watercolours by Dutch, Italian and German artists for decades, and made this show possible. The work of photographer Enrica Scalfari is also on show. She shot the landscapes and places represented in the paintings from the Hermitage, offering visitors the chance to see how the places in question have changed in the course of time. Tue-sun h11-19. €5

MACRO - Museo Arte Contemporanea Roma, via Reggio Emilia, 54. Info 06671070400
Until 28 Feb 2009: Ernesto Neto
The installation is dedicated to Brazilian artist Ernesto Neto, born in Rio de Janeiro in 1964 and on show in an Italian museum for the first time ever. This fluctuating architectural project, with its organic and floral forms, were especially conceived for the Macro Hall space. The artist invites the public to walk through the work and interact with them. The installation will use all the space of the Museum's Glass Gallery (galleria vetrata). Tue-sun h9-19. €1

Museo della Civiltà Romana, piazza G. Agnelli, 10. Info 060608
Until 1 Mar 2009: Il divo è tratto. A passeggio con Gilles Chaillet, tra segni e disegni, nella Roma dei Cesari (Il divo è tratto. Ambling around the Rome of the Caesars in the company of Gilles Chaillet)
The Rome of the Caesars, the Colosseum, the Roman Forum, Circus Maximus, the streets and alleys of ancient Rome: you can try and conjure all this up in our heads, or... you can go see it at the Museum of Roman Civilisation! These 20 wood tables by the master Gilles Chaillet - laid out chronologically - show ancient Rome at its most enchanting. A series of interactive stations are also available and allow visitors to travel back in time. Workshops will also be held to accompany the exhibition. Tue-fri h9-14; sat and sun h9-19. €6,50, reduced €4,50

Museo di Roma Palazzo Braschi, piazza San Pantaleo, 1. Info 060608
Until 19 Apr 2009: Roma, la magnifica visione. Vedute panoramiche del XVIII e XIX secolo dalle collezioni del Museo di Roma (Rome the magnificent. Panoramic views of the city between the 18th and 19th centuries from the Museum of Rome collection)
A selection of 35 works on loan from the Museum of Rome - water-colours, temperas and paintings - show us how Rome looked to the eyes of travellers and artists: it was a city rich in stupendous monuments, beautiful nature and landscapes. Villa Ludovisi, the Aventine and Monte Mario are three of the places in Rome that come up most frequently in the paintings. Some of the most famous works on show are views of Rome by Samuel Rawle, John Newbolt and Ippolito Caffi. Curators: Patrizia Masini, Anna Aletta and Fabio Betti. Tue-sun h9-19 (closed: 25 Dec and 1 Jan 2009). €8, reduced €6

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