Chic in Milano: Museo Vigna di Leonardo
Last week I noticed two interesting Instagram photos posted from Milan on the same day. One was taken by interior designer Suzanne Rheinstein and the other by editor J.J. Martin. While they both had different captions and descriptions, I had a feeling they were both visiting the same place. After some careful online sleuthing, I discovered the place in question was the Museo Vigna di Leonardo.
The best source of information regarding this museum comes from a 2011 Wall Street Journal article, Touching the Fabric of Italian Life, about the Castellini textile family.The 15th-century “Atellani Palazzo on Corso Magenta was once owned by the powerful Sforza family and now contains a private museum, with 17th-century frescoed Zodiac ceilings and paintings by Crespi. The house, which also contains an apartment and a book store, now belongs to Piero Castellini, who, along with his cousin Emanuele, owns C&C Milano.”
I’m not sure where Piero Castellini whose apartment is seen in these photos will be living while the entire complex is open for tours. Perhaps he spends his days at the office and returns after the tours have ended for the day. You may recognize his house as the one used for The Recchi family matriarch played by Marisa Berenson in the Italian film I Am Love. Interestingly enough, the other famous home in the film, Villa Necchi Campiglio which was used as the home for the rest of the Recchi family, was designed by Piero’s grandfather, the architect Piero Portaluppi, in the 1930s.
The palazzo sits opposite the Santa Marie della Grazie church where Leonardo da Vinci painted The Last Supper. The story says that the Sforza family gave Leonardo the property’s vineyard in 1498 and it is where he spent time during his work on The Last Supper.
“With the help of two important institutions, the University of Agricultural Sciences in Milan and Confagricoltura, the Portaluppi Foundation and the owners of the house decided to replant Leonardo da Vinci’s vineyard and open Casa degli Atellani and garden to the public on the occasion of Expo 2015.”
Start making your travel plans now because the Museo Vigna di Leonardo is only open through October 2015.