The idea for the museum dates as far back as 1788, when Grand Duke Pietro Leopoldo of Lorraine first promoted the idea of “a school of taste” for the education of future artists. The museum finally opened in 1858 near the Town Hall. A rich collection traces the history and art history of Prato. A thematic exhibit, Treasures of the Town, gathers highlights of the collection. The museum boasts paintings and drawings from the 14th-19th centuries; sculptures by the Della Robbia family and the Pratese artist Lorenzo Bartolini; and a significant collection of minor arts including 18th-century ceramics and arms and costumes from the 19th-century. Both the Town Hall Picture Gallery and the Emperor's Castle are incorporated in the Municipal Museum. The Picture Gallery's exhibit is dedicated to the subject of portraits, while that of the Emperor's Castle evokes the history of the building through models, sculptures and explanatory texts.
The museum hosts a range of didactic activities including school programs, multimedia DVDs for adults, and a fully reconstructed, three-dimensional medieval town which allows visitors to explore not just the exteriors, but also the interiors of its buildings.
Source: Prato APT