Synopses & Reviews
This is a major study of illusionistic wall painting in the Roman houses of Pompeii and Herculaneum, as well as those in Boscoreale, Oplontis, and Rome itself. Donatella Mazzoleni writes on the connections between Roman architecture and the programs of illusionistic wall paintings employed in these magnificent structures. Umberto Pappalardo examines the Roman domestic ideal and its realization in wall painting and through other elements of interior decoration. These two essays precede a magnificently illustrated guide to twenty-eight important villas--among them, the Villa of the Mysteries and the House of the Faun in Pompeii; the Casa di Livia, the Villa della Farnesina, and the Domus Aurea in Rome; the Casa del Gran Portale in Herculaneum; and the Villa of Publius Fannius Synistor in Boscoreale.
"This guide to the frescoed walls of 28 early first-millennium Italian villas is hugely expensive, but worth it; turning its pages feels as intimate as standing in the rooms themselves. At 11 1/4'12 3/4', the gorgeous full-bleeds among the 350 color illustrations (with three foldouts) on choice textured stock feel like walls, and the colors, including the subtly shaded blues of the Villa of Livia's long east wall, are superb. University of Naples architectural historian Mazzoleni contributes an essay detailing the links between Roman architecture and the lifelike perspectives of the paintings. Pappalardo, director of excavations at Herculaneum, provides texts on all the sites, most of which are in Pompeii and Herculaneum, and only partially intact. He provides commentary on the scenes of gods, animals, grand palaces, cherubs and plants, but, while informative and unobtrusive, his notes are unnecessary: the images have a depth and silence that communicate directly and make much of Renaissance painting look brassy, if not shallow." Publishers Weekly (Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information, Inc.)
This is a major study of illusionistic wall painting in the Roman houses of Pompeii and Herculaneum, as well as those in Boscoreale, Oplontis, and Rome itself. Two essays precede a magnificently illustrated guide to twenty-eight important villas with 350 color illustrations.