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"The Painters of Pompeii" opens June 26 at The Oklahoma City Museum of Art

OKLAHOMA CITY, June 23, 2021 -- Beginning June 26, visitors to the OKCMOA will be transported to ancient Rome through the incredible wall paintings, or frescoes, of Pompeii and Herculaneum. "The Painters of Pompeii: Roman Frescoes from the National Archaeological Museum, Naples" highlights the rarely explored world of the ancient Roman painter and offers a glimpse into their processes, materials and techniques through over 80 artifacts and artworks. Open through Oct. 17, this historic presentation of the art of ancient Rome will be presented exclusively at OKCMOA before returning to Europe.

"In 79 CE, Mount Vesuvius erupted, covering the seaside resort towns of Pompeii and Herculaneum in ash and volcanic rock," said Dr. Michael J. Anderson, OKCMOA president and CEO. "The eruption preserved Roman luxury villas and homes until excavations began in the 1700s. These excavations unearthed extensive and richly colored frescoes painted on the walls of homes and public buildings throughout the cities." 

"Early in the excavations, many of the paintings were cut out of the walls and taken to museums," Anderson continued. "It is incredibly rare for ancient paintings to survive into the present day, much less to be taken to a museum for display. We are thrilled to provide the incredible opportunity to be immersed in the day-to-day lives of the ancient Romans."

"The Painters of Pompeii" highlights a seldom-seen medium--the Roman wall painting, which was prevalent in ancient Rome. The interiors of Roman buildings were sumptuously decorated with bold colors and designs that ranged in theme from mythology to landscapes to still lifes to architecture. Often, these paintings covered the entire wall, from floor to ceiling, and transported the viewer beyond the confines of the room.

The exhibition is free for Museum members, kids 17 and under and active military as part of Blue Star Museums; tickets ($16 for adults) are on sale now. Free children's admission is possible thanks to generous support from The Chickasaw Nation, The Ann Lacy Foundation, Cresap Family Foundation and Chuck and Renate Wiggin. Pre-sales are strongly encouraged for this high-demand North American exclusive.

This exhibition is organized by the National Archaeological Museum, Naples and MondoMostre and is presented by George Records and the Inasmuch Foundation.

Credit: Archivio Fotografico del Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli

Media Contact:

Becky Weintz
Office: (405) 278-8218
[email protected]

SOURCE Oklahoma City Museum of Art