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Oklahoma City Museum of Art to host 'The Painters of Pompeii', contains pieces from Naples' National Archaeological Museum

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The Oklahoma City Museum of Art will host a landmark exhibit for history and art lovers alike, bringing frescoes buried by Mount Vesuvius to display in North America for the first time in a show that runs from June 26 to Oct. 17. 

'The Painters of Pompeii,'composed of pieces from the National Archaeological Museum in Naples will feature colorful wall paintings that were preserved in volcanic ash after the eruption of Mount Vesuvius nearly two thousand years ago. They were later discovered on walls of homes and public buildings during excavations of Pompeii and Herculaneum in the 1700s, according to the OKCMOA website

Allison Palmer, OU professor of art history, called the frescoes “excellent examples of naturalism” due to the murals’ depictions of elegant figures gesturing and posing against softly modeled cityscape and landscape backgrounds. 

“They have a great sense of depth and modeling with light and dark contrasts, which is difficult to achieve in this type of mural painting,” Palmer said. 

The exhibit includes over 80 artifacts and artworks from the National Archaeological Museum in Naples

“I am excited to see this type of art in Oklahoma City because these ancient paintings almost never travel, so it is a rare opportunity to see artworks from the National Archaeological Museum in Naples here in Oklahoma,” Palmer said. 

The OKCMOA will offer guided tours and host lectures by ancient Roman art and history scholars during the exhibition. 

Tickets are available, though capacity and times are limited, on OKCMOA’s site.


Mikaela DeLeon is an incoming journalism junior and a news reporter at The Daily.

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