Places Around National Museum of Ancient Art (Museu Nacional de Arte Antiga)
National Museum of Ancient Art
National Museum of Ancient Art in Lisbon in Portuguese is called Museu Nacional de Arte Antiga, or even shorter – MNAA. At the moment it’s the most remarkable art gallery in the country and also stays in the top of European art museums.
In this museum one can find a rich collection of Portuguese art prior to the 19th century. It’s interesting that comparing to many other famous art museums in Europe, MNAA exists only from 1884. The palace of the counts of Alvor houses this museum together with an old Carmelite Convent of Santo Alberto. An abounding collection of paintings, textiles, furniture, sculptures, and exhibits made of various metals dating back to middle ages and till the end of the 19th century. Many works are unique and have great historical value.
Maybe the most famous masterpiece you can see in this museum is the Saint Vincent Panels, 1470; six big panels show people representing different layers of society venerating Saint Vincent. There are also numerous works of such Portuguese artists as Jorge Afonso, Vasco Fernandes, Garcia Fernandes, Fracisco de Holanda, Cristovao Lopes, Gregorio Lopes, Frei Carlos, Josefa de Obidos, Morgado de Setubal, and many others.
This museum is remarkable not only for its unique paintings, but also for metalwork – outstanding pieces dating back to 12-18th centuries are found there. For example, you’ll see there a monstrance of Belem which is believed to be made of the first gold brought to Portugal from India by Vasco da Gama.