The great event of the 2021 programming of the National Archaeological Museum of Naples; the exhibition that combines archeology and technology to tell a myth of all times; the scientific project which, without sacrificing methodological rigor, unites Italian and foreign institutions under the aegis of a shared path of knowledge.
There are many ways to define "Gladiators", the exhibition that, presented in digital preview on March 31, is scheduled at MANN until January 6, 2022. The heart of the exhibition are one hundred and sixty exhibits that, in the Salone della Meridiana, are suggestive pieces of a fascinating research journey in six sections: 1) From the funeral of the heroes to the duel for the dead; 2) The weapons of the Gladiators; 3) From mythical hunting to venationes; 4) Life as a Gladiator; 5) The Amphitheaters of Campania; 6) The Gladiators "everywhere". An integral part of the itinerary is the technological "seventh section" which, significantly entitled "Gladiatorimania" and concentrated in the New Arm of the Museum, constitutes a real didactic and informative tool to make the various themes of the show. "Idols of the crowds, coveted by women and protagonists of historical rebellions, the gladiators were kissed by a fame that already in their time crossed the boundaries of the arenas and that over the centuries has been further magnified", says the director of the MANN, Paolo Giulierini «Just think of the many films that have made the events spectacular or the role that the term itself has taken on in our vocabulary and in everyday life. How many times have the idols of sport and football in particular called 'gladiators'? And "Gladiators of our time" are certainly courageous women and men who fight to bring noble missions to success, first of all the health workers in the fight against Covid-19. The exhibition has the ambition to tell not only the myth, but also the human dimension of the gladiator: it does not hide the hardest elements, but places them in a wider frame, revealing the men under the helmets and the historical context in which they lived. From a certain point of view, it is the most painful and symbolic exhibition we made at MANN: like the ancient gladiators, today we all feel a little hurt and suffering. But, taking a cue from their courage and tenacity, we are ready to get up again ».