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Treasures, artifacts to be on display at OMSI give glimpse of daily life at city destroyed by Mount Vesuvius volcano

COURTESY: OMSI - In the new exhibit at OMSI, 'Pompeii: The Exhibition,' journey through time and see more than 200 rare artifacts from the forgotten city, including weapons and armor, jewelry and household items, precious artwork and even preserved human bodies. Fresh off their Lego brick art exhibit, the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry on June 24 will launch another one-of-a-kind, awe-inspiring show.

It's all about the lost city of Pompeii, the Roman city that was destroyed by erupting Mount Vesuvius in 79 A.D. but forgotten and preserved for more than 1,700 years until it was rediscovered just 250 years ago.

"We wanted to bring this most historical event back to life and allow visitors to relive it vividly," says John Norman, president of Exhibitions International and producer of the exhibit.

The show, he says, "allows you to explore treasures and experience life in the bustling city of Pompeii before time essentially stopped."

Kids and adults fascinated with archaeology will get to see 200 precious artifacts on loan from the Naples National Archaeological Museum in Italy.

Among them: a bronze gladiator helmet, armor and weapons, household objects, jewelry, a Citharist bronze statue of Apollo, and several fresco paintings — including one of Dionysus and Silenus that dates to between 50-79 A.D.

"This exhibition offers our guests the opportunity to study and understand history through the scientific lens of archaeology and volcanology," says Nancy Stueber, OMSI's president and CEO.

"It is one of the most fascinating exhibitions of ancient archaeology, featuring artifacts that rarely leave Italy," Stueber adds. "Volcanoes are a part of our life here in the Pacific Northwest, and this exhibition allows our visitors to explore earth and volcano science, regionally and worldwide."

COURTESY: OMSI - The exhibit 'Pompeii: The Exhibition' shows at OMSI, June 24 through Oct. 22. Over time, archaeologists have uncovered a record of daily life in ancient Pompeii, including its roads, buildings and other infrastructure, paintings and mosaics, other artifacts and even preserved bodies. Excavations at the site are still underway, and scientists are learning more every day.

Visitors will get to see a video that sets the scene, see a reproduced atrium from a Roman villa, and take a virtual journey via projections, sights, sounds and murals that will transport you to various locations like a Roman market, temple, theater and baths.

Step into the 4D theater to experience the impact Mount Vesuvius had on the ancient city, and end your trip with the eerie spectacle of body casts of human forms forever frozen in time.

The Pompeii exhibit runs June 24-Oct. 22; for admission and other details, visit www.omsi.edu.

@jenmomanderson

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