The First Art Newspaper on the Net Established in 1996 United States Friday, August 1, 2014


Cash troubles threaten 'Gladiator' tomb in Rome despite a plea from Oscar-winning actor Russell Crowe
File photo of Russell Crowe arriveing at The Australian Academy of Cinema and Television Arts Awards, Friday, Jan. 27, 2012. AP Photo/Katy Winn.

By: Eleanor Ide

ROME (AFP).- The tomb of the Roman general who inspired the film "Gladiator" risks falling into oblivion despite a plea from Oscar-winning actor Russell Crowe to save it, as recession-hit Italy struggles to preserve its archaeological jewels.

"It's incredibly sad, this is an extraordinary site. Its fate has caught the eyes of the world," said Daniela Rossi, head archaeologist on the dig that unearthed the tomb of Roman general Marcus Nonius Macrinus.

Rossi's team in 2008 uncovered fragments of the tomb under thick strata of mud and clay.

Their remarkable discovery of a stretch of ancient Roman road lined by tombs in an industrial wasteland outside Rome sparked four years of painstaking excavation and restoration projects, costing some 700,000 euros ($929,000).

But Italy's battle to stave off the debt crisis has seen the government impose austerity cuts which have shaved 20 percent off the budget for maintenance of Italy's ancient sites -- from the Colosseum to Pompeii -- since 2010, and funds for the tomb dig have dried up.

With an estimated two million euros needed to finish cleaning up the site and protect it from air pollution and winter ice, the city said the only option was to rebury the tomb to preserve it.

The news sparked an online campaign by the American Institute for Roman Culture to keep it open, prompting Crowe -- whose character in the 2000 film was based on the real-life Macrinus -- to join the fight to save the tomb.

Crowe's appeal, Rossi said, was what forced the city to re-think its approach and the ruins will no longer be re-interred -- though they are being covered up under protective fabric, with no guarantee that work at the dig will start again in the spring.

"It was media pressure which finally put a halt to the idea of reburying the site. Crowe's intervention was generous and I hope it has changed the tomb's future," Rossi said.

Next to the tomb, delicately-carved marble columns and terracotta tiles line a stretch of perfectly preserved Roman road -- the ancient Via Flaminia, which runs north along the Tiber river and bears the marks of the soldiers and merchants' carts which thundered in and out of the capital each day.

The land now belongs to the Bonifaci real estate group, which reportedly aims to build three luxury apartment blocks on the site, though it is considering "sponsoring a project to improve the area" around the tomb, which it would keep apart from the houses.

"We are in talks to try and secure funding from the landowners, but it's far from a done deal and we're not counting on being able to uncover the site again," Rossi said.

"They have at least promised that whatever happens, they will not build on top of it," she added.

Macrinus ruled swathes of what is now Central Europe and Turkey after a number of military victories under Emperor Marcus Aurelius.

Unlike the film character, the successful general was not then made a slave and never became a gladiator under Aurelius's son Commodus.

ide/dt/jhb


© 1994-2012 Agence France-Presse



Last Week News

December 29, 2012

The New Orleans Museum Art explores the boundaries between the real and fabricated

National Gallery announces first major monographic exhibition, dedicated to the art of Federico Barocci

FBI removes many redactions in Marilyn Monroe file recently obtained by The Associated Press

Exhibition focuses on the self-portrait as a genre throughout the 20th and into the 21st century

Mexican historian and educator Artemio Benavides Hinojosa dies at the age of 79

Praying Hitler by Italian artist Maurizio Cattelan in ex-Warsaw ghetto sparks emotion

Spink to offer fine and rare stamps and covers of China and Hong Kong in January sale

Los Angeles Modern Auctions' 20th anniversary season totals over $5 million

Artistic positions from five decades of photogaphy on view at Fotomuseum Winterthur

Pakistan's Rohtas Gallery for 30 years has defied dictatorships and fundamentalists

Paintings at the National College of Arts in the eastern city of Lahore outrage Islamic hard-liners in Pakistan

Art Rotterdam announces gallery selection 2013, all Dutch top galleries are present

Hundreds of interactive paper boats by Aether & Hemera sail into Canary Wharf

Not a hint of 'Bah, humbug' as Waverly auctions Dickens book collection for 17 times high estimate

Luciano Rigolini's "Concept Car" on view at Musée de l'Elysée

Sweater knit by Myanmar's Suu Kyi sells for $49K

Steven Holl Architects' Daeyang Gallery and House wins 2012 Annual Design Review Award

National Gallery of Canada seeks nationwide participation in creating artwork

December 28, 2012

Archaeologists discover objects, more than 700 years old, at Nevado de Toluca in Mexico

Royal Collection of Graphic Art invites visitors to journey into the realms of detail

Oregon man convicted in murder-for-hire plot and looting ancient Indian graves dies

Magnificent 18th-century furniture by Abraham and David Roentgen on view at Metropolitan Museum

Chinese artist and human rights activist Ai Weiwei publishes his "Little Black Book," WEIWEI-ISMS

Famed designer Wendell Castle exhibits at Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft

Maestro of lights creates monumental sculpture on The Bay Bridge in San Francisco

CAC Málaga presents exhibition by the artistic duo Markus Muntean and Adi Rosenblum

Journeys: Wanderings in contemporary Turkey at Espace culturel Louis Vuitton

The Lower Mississippi River Museum provides education about Lower Miss. River

'Invisible Exhibition' in Warsaw offers an opportunity to understand what it is like to be sightless

Rosphoto announces exhibition of the work by Sergey Sveshnikov on view at the hall of the Dom Kino

New Aboriginal art movement showcased at National Museum of Australia

Dusseldorf Photo Weekend to take place again starting in February

Denver Art Museum to inaugurate textile galleries with campus wide exhibition

Norton Simon Museum presents "Studies in Desperation: A Suite by Connor Everts"

Affordable Art Fair to launch in Hong Kong, March 2013

Are museums the cinemas of the future?

Galerie Kadel Willborn to open branch in Düsseldorf

Florida man pleads guilty in NY in dinosaur dispute

December 27, 2012

Israeli dig uncovers ancient Judaean temple dated to the early monarchic period

After a successful year, Bonhams ends 2012 with over 30 new world auction records

New display of American art at Detroit Institute of Arts commemorates the Civil War

Masterpieces from the Van Gogh Museum among the many highlights of TEFAF Maastricht

Bonhams to offer the renowned Oldenburg family collection of classic automobiles

John Van Doren and Dorsey Waxter announced the opening of a new gallery in New York

Art13 London announces focus on Contemporary photography, prints and editions

Despite changes in style, majestic pipe organs endure at Roman Catholic and mainline Protestant parishes

Mathematics is anything but boring at New York City's newest museum: MoMath

Expert, appraiser, and television personality Lark Mason predicts top 10 collecting trends for 2013

Colour Rain at the Bamboo Grove: Seminal Austrian artist Hubert Schmalix turns 60

Prestige watches, sapphires and gold sparkle in Government Auction's New Year's Day Auction

Stephenson's plans festive New Year's Day auction of items from prime Philadelphia estates and residences

Homelands: One of the year's most anticipated exhibitions, opens in 4 cities across India in 2013

Auckland Triennial curator asks 'If you were to live here...'

Larasati announces sale of artworks by renowned Southeast Asian and Indo-European masters

Major new multimedia project by Tadasu Takamine at Contemporary Art Center, Art Tower Mito

Carl Morris' "History of Religions" returns to the Barker Gallery at the Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art

Fred Wilson's artworks explore museum practices within a museum setting

December 26, 2012

In 150th anniversary of his birth, Edvard Munch at pains to win favour in native Norway

Captivated by darkness: Charles Meryon and the French etching revival on view at the Hamburger Kunsthalle

The collection of Barbara und Axel Haubrok on view at Deichtorhallen Hamburg

Guggenheim Museum in New York presents exhibition featuring recent acquisitions

The Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth celebrates 10th anniversary of building designed by Tadao Ando

BACA Award 2012 winner Mary Heilmann exhibits at Bonnefantenmuseum

Estorick Collection launches its first virtual exhibition: Futurism and the Past

Van Abbemuseum is given collection of 20th century book art and reference works on modern Russian art

Japan's iconic A-bomb comic strip author, Keiji Nakazawa, dies at the age of 73

New York Public Library unveils renovation plan by British architect Norman Foster

Manchester Art Gallery presenting major exhibition of works by artists who work with paper in revolutionary ways

First extensive overview of 17 years of fashion photography by Viviane Sassen on view at Huis Marseille

"Better Books: Art, Anarchy and Apostasy" exhibition at ZKM Museum of Contemporary Art

Powerhouse Museum publishes The Oopsatoreum, Inventions of Henry A. Mintox

Kentaro Kobuke's first solo show in Hong Kong opens at Identity Art Gallery

First large solo show of Adrian Paci in Kosovo opens at the National Gallery in Pristina

Antiquorum Auctioneers to sponsor Geneva Time Exhibition

Everson receives major grants to support revitalization of Gustav Stickley House

Wisconsin man's Little Free Library copied worldwide

Lake Placid's Mirror Lake Inn, an Adirondack jewel

December 25, 2012

Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam: One of the most important museums reopening in 2013

Cindy Sherman at the Walker Art Center is a comprehensive survey of the acclaimed artist's many guises

Dialogue between two masters of color, Johannes Itten and Paul Klee, at the Kunstmuseum Bern

Only known work in Canada by the great Venetian artist Titian, featured at the National Gallery of Canada

Treasures of the Alfred Stieglitz Center: Photographs from the permanent collection opens

Exhibition looks at the V&A's engagement with and changing view of art and design from Africa

Exhibition documents American artists' continuing fascination with the American landscape

Canadian Pioneers: Masterworks from the Sobey Collections on view at the Art Gallery of Nova Scotia

Design Museum in Ghent exhibits works by revolutionary Japanese designer Shiro Kuramata

Fifth year of Artist Rooms On Tour announced: 16 venues will display Artist Rooms in 2013

Diana Venet's collection of jewelry made by artists on view at Valencian Institute for Modern Art

Robert Frost's Christmas cards collected by Dartmouth College in New Hampshire

A huge collection comprising 10,000 of ames Comisar's TV memorabilia items needs a home

Tale of lost military jacket prompts curiosity

Belvedere opens a new exhibition floor space to feature young contemporary artists

Ben Ali's ill-gotten gains draw crowds of Tunisians

The Story of the 47 Ronin at the Art Gallery of Greater Victoria

Pssst: An Exhibition for Kids at the MMK in Frankfurt

Grateful Dead exhibit extended in Cleveland

December 24, 2012

Exhibition of large paintings by Neo Rauch opens at Kunstsammlungen Chemnitz

Seven hundred years of French painting on view at the Wadsworth Atheneum in Hartford

Museum of Contemporary Art Australia presents the first major exhibition in Australia of artist Anish Kapoor

The Museum of Modern Art explores development of one of Modernism's greatest inventions: Abstraction

Review of the auction year 2012: Koller extends its position as the leading Swiss auction house

Kimbell Art Museum announces first ever loan of 20th century works from the Art Institute of Chicago

Gallery reinstallation project enters exciting new phase with 'Empire of Things'

The San Diego Museum of Art hosts interactive art exhibition from the Centre Pompidou

Charles Ginnever's Rashomon and Amy Kaufman's drawings on view at San Jose Institute of Contemporary Art

Centre d'Art Contemporain in Geneva organizes biggest in-depth Edy Ferguson solo exhibition to date

Available now to download: Free PDF of The New Explorers Guide to Dutch Digital Culture

Let it snow! Exhibition of children's book art opens at Bruce Museum in Greenwich

Pearl Lam Galleries presents its first design art exhibition at its Hong Kong Pedder Building gallery space

The American Museum in Britain hosts Superstars 2012

'Places of Memory-Fields of Vision' opens at the Contemporary Art Center of Thessaloniki

"Beatrice Gibson: The Tiger's Mind, featuring Jesse Ash" at Index-Swedish Contemporary Art Foundation

Builder of California 'Phonehenge' sentenced to jail

Survey comprising works by Lara Favaretto from the past 15 years on view at Sharjah Art Foundation

Mali Islamists destroying more Timbuktu mausoleums

Most Popular Last Seven Days



1.- Archaeologists discover Roman 'free choice' cemetery in the 2,700-year-old ancient port of Rome

2.- Romanians must pay 18 million euros over Kunsthal Museum Rotterdam art heist

3.- Hello Kitty designer Yuko Yamaguchi defends cute character as cat turns 40 years old

4.- eBay and Sotheby's partner to bring world class art and collectibles to a global community

5.- Exhibition on Screen returns with new series of films bringing great art to big screens across the globe

6.- Marina Abramović reaches half way point of her '512 Hours' performance at the Serpentine Gallery

7.- The Phillips Collection in Washington introduces a uCurate app for curating on-the-go

8.- United States comic icon Archie Andrews dies saving openly gay character

9.- New feathered predatory fossil, unearthed in China, sheds light on dinosaur flight

10.- Exhibition at Thyssen Bornemisza Museum presents an analysis of the concept of the 'unfinished'



Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 

Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Rmz. - Marketing: Carla Gutiérrez
Special Contributor: Liz Gangemi - Special Advisor: Carlos Amador
Contributing Editor: Carolina Farias

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org theavemaria.org juncodelavega.org facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site