Fausto & Felice Niccolini. The Houses and Monuments of Pompeii
by Valentin Kockel , Sebastian Schütze
Editor: Taschen GmbH
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When the excavations of Pompeii were first placed on a foot archaeological erudition in the 19th century, brothers Fausto and Felice Niccolini were within reach and ready to respond.Using the new technique of color to lithography, they documented buildings, frescoes, statues, as well as the most ordinary, everyday objects, the city buried in just 24 hours, by the catastrophic eruption of Vesuvius and preserved over 1,600 years under a mantle of volcanic ashThe Niccolinis’ objective was to illustrate all aspects of life in the ancient cityTheir publication, The Case ed i monumenti di Pompei (“The Houses and Monuments of Pompeii”), which was published in several installments, between 1854 and 1896 in Naples, presented over 400 colour plates to provide not only views, maps, and groundplans of the city and its public buildings, but also offered unprecedented access to Pompeii from private residencesThey revealed the astonishing painted wall decorations that adorned these long buried dwellings, their complexes of works of art, and the practice of everyday utensils, evoking a living image of each house as a true domestic space.In total, illustrated plates of over 1,000 items, each amply specified and found for the first time, making the publication a major reference in Pompeii’s researchIn addition, “lively” performances visualized the daily life in Pompeii, workshops, taverns and shops, in its public squares, and in temples, theaters and bathroomsThis meticulous facsimile brings to life the extraordinary Niccolinis realization with all the color plates and two introductory essays defining the project in its contemporary context and presenting the history of the protagonists of the Vesuvians excavationsIn addition, we explore the remarkable influence exerted by Pompeian’s art, and by the haunting of plaster casts made of victims of the eruption on the visual artsThrough painting, sculpture and interior design, we trace the Pompeii of heritage in the work of
Valentin Kockel , Sebastian Schütze – Fausto & Felice Niccolini. The Houses and Monuments of Pompeii – Free
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