Cultural Italy Blog: Art, Coffee & Love

Church Turned Kids Museum in Milan


A church converted into a kids museum? Why not? Surprisingly, Milan is much more than just a city of classic elegance. It is a place that knows how to boldly play with contradictions. Trees growing on building façades (Bosco Verticale residences), a classy tram rolling through the city with food service (Atmosfera restaurant) and now an ex-church turned into a children’s museum.

Rotonda Della Besana (built between 1695 and 1719) is a place that every Milanese knows very well. Located within the historic core of the city, it is a ring-like colonnade portico enclosing a garden and the deconsacrated church of San Michele ai Sepolcri (Saint Michael by the Sepulchers). Since 2014, Rotonda Della Besana houses MuBa (Museo del Bambino) or, more precisely, a no-profit foundation promoting creativity and cultural expressions, and aiming to encourage a stereotype-free thought in children. Result? Intriguing and on the verge of fiction experience that kids and their parents are taken through.

Meticulously studied MuBa guided visits, or better to say workshops, will surprise the most educated grandpa. You can play there with shadows that by magic will turn blue, red and yellow. You’ll see your cloths all of a sudden changing its colors. You will witness entire “murals” appear and disappear on the same wall. And you will learn that the whole question of human visual perception is just a question of light. Indeed not a wizardry but just a science. 

In few words, not a childish trip but a journey based on science of light and colors for the kid that lives inside each one of us.

Maria Novozhilova


twitter: @NovozhilovaM