Musei di Villa Torlonia

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The Room of the Swallows

The Room of the Swallows

Across a narrow passage with a curious gallery closed by spiralled glass, lies the last room in the house. It was added to the building by Vincenze Fasolo in 1918-19 during the last phase of the enlargement.
The room originally had a ceiling painted with swallows in flight, but no trace of it now remains. However the theme of swallows is still present in the fine glass and the stucco work.
In the four corners of the ceiling were four stucco reliefs depicting stages in the life cycle of the swallow: courtship, brooding, hatching and feeding. These reliefs were partially destroyed in the fire that wrecked the house in 1991.
It was only possible to reconstruct three of the nests from the surviving fragments: these three have been restored and put back in place.
The three pieces of stained glass which decorate the gallery continue the swallow motif. They show swallows in flights, perched on branches and against the bright background of a blue sky.
Although the motif of swallows was much loved and very frequently used by Duilio Cambellotti, these pieces cannot be assigned to him with certainty on a stylistic basis. However they can be considered as products of the Picchiarini workshop.
French windows, with stylised glass, in light tones of blue, lead out onto a terrace from which there is a fine view of the park.
Several preparatory cartoons for stained glass by Duilio Cambellotti and Paolo Paschetto are also on display in the room.

Duilio Cambellotti, 1914-1915
M CC 109
Laboratorio Picchiarini, c. 1914
M CC 152 a b c d

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