Last Updated on March 1, 2023

The western wing of the national archaeology museum Naples (the Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Napoli) has re-opened in following a 50-year closure and renovation, adding 2000² meters of space to make it one of the largest classical archaeology museums in the world.

The western wing gallery at the national archaeology museum Naples showcases a new exhibit solely dedicated to Campania during the Roman era. The exhibit showcases 240 artifacts, encompassing sculptures, murals, and inscriptions, originating from key towns in ancient Campania, including Pompeii and Herculaneum.

The exhibit features works such as sculptures that adorned the amphitheater in ancient Capua, wall-frescoes from the basilica of Herculaneum, and a well-known bronze quadriga from Herculaneum that has never been exhibited before. In addition, the recent renovation includes the recovery of the abandoned ‘new arm’ of the museum, which was built in the 1930s.

 Under the leadership of Director Paolo Giulierini, who was elected in 2015 following an international selection process, the national archaeology museum Naples has undergone a significant transformation. With the help of over €50 million in Italian and EU funds over the course of eight years, the 17th-century building has been updated to meet the demands of the 21st century.

“I believe we are now the largest museum of classical archaeology in the world,” Giulierini said. “Our Western wing has undergone an elegant renovation and its re-opening after 50 years has added significant footprint, allowing more of our permanent collection to be on view than ever before.”

Giulierini has overseen the renovation and reinstallation of the museum’s Egyptian, Magna Grecia, and Pre-historic sections. He has also launched ‘The Other MANN’, which displays rotating works from the vast collection.

The museum’s visitor numbers have nearly doubled, increasing from 350,243 to 670,594 between 2014 and 2019.

“Public access has been at the heart of the museum since the collection first opened to the public over 200 years ago – we are delighted to increase access to some of the worlds most celebrated and important archaeological art and artifacts even further,” Giulierini said.

The new services offered by the museum include a 330-seat auditorium, additional exhibition areas, a restaurant, educational departments, a laboratory for conservation and restoration, and a new section that focuses on ancient Roman technology.

The national archaeology museum Naples now serves as the epicenter of a new cultural district in the heart of Naples, which will extend north to the Istituto Regionale Paolo Colosimo, south to the Conservatorio di Musica di San Pietro a Majella, east to Via Enrico Pessina, and opposite the Galleria Principe di Napoli. In its role as “the” city museum, it has launched ‘ExtraMANN’, which is a network of 40 cultural sites throughout Naples that are promoted by the museum, ranging from the Catacombs to the Treasure of San Gennaro.

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