The new face of the Archaeological Museum of Aquileia – Udine

Udine – 136 years after the opening of the Imperial Royal Museum of Villa Cassis Faraone, which revealed for the first time to the public the wealth of ancient Aquileia, and to 20 from the inscription of its vestiges in the Heritage of Unesco Humanity, the National Archaeological Museum of Aquileia presents its new face, the result of an effective synergy between public and private funding.

A capillary crowdfunding action has in fact added to the 4,5 million euro allocated by the Ministry for Cultural Assets and Activities to the Strategic Plan for the restoration and enhancement of the Museum Complex of Friuli Venezia Giulia, giving life to the renovation of one space crucial for understanding the greatness, variety and temporal continuity of the archaeological area of ​​Aquileia .

The new exhibition, designed to meet the needs of the contemporary public, benefits from the restoration of representative treasures of the ancient Roman city, but also of jewels hitherto concealed in deposits of the museum, which today we see exhibited for the first time.
The result is an extraordinary glance on the past of a territory located at the confluence between the Mediterranean and Balkan routes, northern and eastern Europe, where the historical coexistence between peoples and civilizations different produced highly refined artistic and cultural outcomes .

From what is currently the most complete example of Roman city in the Mediterranean area arrive mosaics of amazing beauty flagships of the 'Aquileia archeology, but also the furnishings, frescoes and objects in ceramics, glass and precious metals that once adorned the domus and that today speak to us of the daily life of the most affluent classes.
Next to the funerary objects found in the necropolis of Sant'Egidio, visitors can admire splendid sculptures, including impressive marble statues of the emperors Augusto and Claudio the beautiful Venere Pudica and a series of characteristic portraits of the inhabitants of ancient Aquileia which constitute one of the peculiarities of the collection.
To mark the route are focus on the urban layout, the customs, production activities, arts and places most representative of this millennial settlement, up to a new important section dedicated to "Aquileia Porta del Mediterraneo" which, through documents and epigraphs, returns the image of a lively and cosmopolitan port center, a crossroads of people, goods, languages ​​and religions.

"The museum is always a complex organism with its own life and its history, in which knowledge, emotion and narration constitute a multiform set, that everything changes when it changes even a single his part. For this reason, the task of realigning it preserving its place and soul, but turning it to modern standards, calls for both intimate participation and lucid detachment ", explains director of the Friuli Venezia Giulia Museum Complex Luca Carbulotto .
"The end of the project", continues the director of the MAN of Aquileia Marta Novello "was to make the museum, even more than before, a place open to everyone and not only to the employees and to the lovers of archeology. A living place, in which the works themselves, and through the ancient inhabitants of Aquileia, accompany the visitor or rather the different visitors with their multiple needs, to discover what was once of the most important economic, cultural and strategic-military centers of the Roman world ".
The exhibition criteria have been radically rethought to make the most of the collection, says the director: "the materials have undergone a careful selection and are now presented within their contexts of use, with the aim of offering an engaging narrative path that allows a greater understanding of the reality of the ancient city ".

The redevelopment project is the result of a team work that has seen side-by-side internal expertise at Mibac – such as the Caburlotto and Novello directors, Anna Chiarelli, sole manager of the procedure, Stefania Casucci for the design, Elena Braidotti and Annalisa De Franzoni for technical-scientific support – to professionals such as Giovanni Tortelli for the museographic exhibition, to a scientific committee composed of experts in the sector – Gemma Sena Church, Francesca Ghedini, Franca Maselli Scotti, Francesca Morandini, Matteo Ceriana.

And while the excavations continue, Aquileia reaches another important milestone: i complexes of the Domus and the Episcopal Palace of the Baptistery and of the Southern Hall are the winners of the sixth edition of the prestigious Premio Francovich aimed at museums and archaeological parks that express good praxis of museological set-up, educational-communicative activities and scientific quality on late ancient or high medieval archeology .
Recently realized by Fondazione Aquileia to highlight and make more accessible the archaeological heritage of the Friulian town, the two routes were rewarded by the votes of the public.

"I believe that the evocative power of these two museum layouts the work of the architects Tortelli and Frassoni, and of the important remains was one of the main reasons that the visitors appreciated", commented the director of the Aquileia Foundation Cristiano Tiussi : "Thanks to them, it is possible to understand how the basilical complex, between the second half of the fourth and fifth centuries, had a planimetric extension and a decidedly more decorative refinement. wide and rich in what could only be recognized a few years ago. The domus and episcopal palace, moreover, allows to appreciate in all its profound stratigraphy as the area of ​​the city now close to the basilica has grown over the centuries on itself changing over time and up to the days our functional destination, and in particular constituting a sector of the vast residence of the bishop of Aquileia ".

To celebrate the event, Sunday, August 5 the complexes of the Domus-Episcopal Palace and the Baptistery-Southern Hall will be open for free .

Read also:
• Discovering Aquileia with Cristiano Tiussi
• Aquileia "Mother of Venice" and Porta towards the East – Interview with Antonio Zanardi Landi
• Aquileia: new catwalk to admire the mosaics of the Domus and the Episcopal Palace

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