Genoa’s municipal museums considerably reflect the history and culture of the city: they are only partly the result of local government institutions, while the contribution of private patronage is significant.

These include the Museum of Natural History G. Doria (1867), Palazzo Rosso (1874) and Palazzo Bianco (1892) - which today, together with Palazzo Tursi, make up the Museums of Strada Nuova - the Oriental Art Museum E. Chiossone (1905), the Castello D'Albertis - Museum of World Cultures (1932), the Giannettino Luxoro Museum (1951). The various donations explain the multiplicity of locations - mostly prestigious residences converted to museum use - to which the Municipality has added others during the twentieth century to provide adequate space to house the collections which have, in the meantime, grown both by new donations and purchases: this is how the GAM Modern Art Museum (1928), the Pegli Maritime Museum (1929), the Museum of Risorgimento (1934), the Ligurian Archeological Museum (1936), the Museum of St. Augustine (opened and expanded at various dates between 1940 and 1984), the Treasure Museum of St. Lorenzo Cathedral (1956), the Contemporary Art Museum of Villa Croce (1985), the Frugone Collections (1992) and, most recently, the Galata Maritime Museum (2004) came into being.

A consistent, varied and complex set of institutions, to which must be added the specialist collections - numismatics, ceramics, textiles, graphics, topographical, historical - which preserve an invaluable heritage remarkable for its richness, quality, variety, importance and temporal extension.