Goethe in Italy

Live, travel, discover

Spend some time with the most important poet and thinker of the German language.

Accompany Goethe to Italy and experience his everyday life in the artists’ residence on the Via del Corso. With contemporary documents, letters as well as drawings and sketches by his artist friend Tischbein, which portray Goethe relaxed and at ease, the Casa di Goethe impressively conveys a picture of this Roman living situation.

“The object of my most ardent longing, the pain of which quite filled my soul, was Italy, whose image and picture floated before me for many years in vain, till at length I formed the bold determination of seeing the reality face to face.”

In Italy, Goethe pursued his manifold interests which are presented in the in-house collection. Take delight in his work on colour theory inspired by Roman light, discover his research on the plant world that he deepened in Sicily and admire the works of the artists Goethe was in daily contact with and who inspired him to do his own drawings.

An eye-catcher of this exhibition is Andy Warhol’s 1982 portrait of Goethe which alludes to Tischbein’s famous painting “Goethe in the Campagna di Roma”. Georgi Takev’s copy of this most famous Goethe depiction is displayed in the room in which the original was begun over 200 years ago – in Tischbein’s studio. Linger here for a moment and let yourself be awed by the almost physical presence of the poet.

After all, the literary elements must not be neglected in a Goethe exhibition. In the last room you can see next to the Warhol portrait the works Goethe created and completed in Rome which include “Iphigenia” and “Tasso”. The “Roman Elegies” were inspired by an unknown Roman woman who visited Goethe in his room here at night: the short letter to him in which she assures the poet of her love may have been from her.

Both the permanent and the temporary exhibitions are organised, accompanied and maintained with professional competence and love for the cause by a team of renowned historians and experts with proven Goethe expertise.


Permanent exhibition