...gonna kick the darkness 'till it bleeds daylight... musings of a hungarian in texas

©2003 by Annamaria Kovacs. All contents of this blog are the property of the author. Use with written permission only.

Monday, August 13, 2007

From The Ashes Rise The Colors

Bizarrely enough, the U2 song "Beautiful Day' kept playing in my hand as The Husband and I wandered through the Dallas Museum of Art's guest exhibit: "From The Ashes of Vesuvius: In Stabiano: Exploring the Ancient Seaside Villas of the Roman Elite".
I am an aborted classical archaeologist--I had two years of specialized studies behind me when I realized I just cannot get the language work done to become both a medieval and a classical archaeologist (plus some personal disagreements with certain teachers, but that's another story), so when I heard that this traveling exhibition comes to Dallas this summer, I was more than happy. They are here until October: plenty of time to go and see.

As The Husband remarked as we walked out: "I see now. Stabiae was like the hills of DC crossed with Dubai." It really was. The seaside villas of the period of 1st century BC to 89AD (when the Vesuvius's eruption ended a golden era of summer bay life to the top 0.01% of Roman elite) as nothing but impressive even with modern standards, and the exhibition's well-chosen artifacts demonstrate this to their advantage.

What really got me though (and does every time I am again immersing myself in Roman culture) is the riot of colors they used decorating their houses, and how well, in this case, the exhibitors represented those colors by painting the walls of the exhibit walls to match or counterpoint the fresco pieces or other architectural elements. Those colors seems to be alive, breathing and shouting--must have literally come alive back then in the Mediterranean sunshine...

If anyone wants to go and see it, I would be more than happy to go again with them...:-)


At 12:00 PM, Blogger Madeleine said...

It sounded like it was going to be really interesting - I'm glad it was.
This exhibit is definitely on my list of one's to see while they're here (along with the Valencia tiles at the Meadows and the moderist portraits at the Kimbell). I love it when there's a glut of good stuff going on :-)

At 3:19 PM, Blogger Annamaria said...

Just do me a favor and don't drink the coffee at the DMA. Or the lemonade. Trust me. You'll have no tooth enamel left, for one reason or the other...:-)

At 9:38 AM, Anonymous That Dude said...

You can drink the coffee, but if, and only if, you are prepared for it to be "medicinal" coffee.

It's gas-station quality.

At 10:16 AM, Blogger Annamaria said...

You'd think for that posh air they put up in the DMA and its restaurant and cafe, their coffee would be better. I am very non-impressed.


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