"Mostri. Creature Fantastiche della Paura e del Mito" (Monsters. Fantastic Creatures of Fear and Myth)

20/12/2013 - 01/06/2014

From 20 December to 1 June 2013 the exhibition "Mostri. Creature fantastiche della paura e del mito" (Monsters. Fantastic Creatures of Fear and Myth) will be open to the public at  Palazzo Massimo alle Terme.Over one hundred archaeological finds, from Italian and foreign museums - Athens, Berlin, Basel, Vienna, Los Angeles and New York - illustrate the iconographic evolution of the Minotaur, the Griffins, the Chimeras, the Gorgons, Pegasus, the Sphinx, the Harpies, the Sirens, the Satyrs, the Centaurs, the Hydra of Lerna, Scylla and other sea monsters, from the Orient to Greece, as well as to the Etruscan, Italic and Roman world.

A reminder that Classical Art not only portrays the ideal beauty of gods and heroes, but also a series of creatures of horror, into which men have always cast the darkest aspects of themselves. The exhibition unfolds itself along a labyrinthic path, just as the ancient shape throughout which heroes had to walk in their initiatory journey before they could come "forth to rebehold the stars".

The persistence of mythological figures in modern and contemporary culture is illustrated by the paintings on canvas Crete (by Alberto Savino), Medusa (by an anonymous Flemish painter of the first half of the 17th century), Perseus freeing Andromeda (by Cavalier d' Arpino).

A public lecture focused on the art of giving birth to movie monsters will be held by visual effects and makeup experts Scott Ross and Shane Mahan on 21 December, 2013 at 11.00 at the Auditorium Parco della Musica, in order to link the birth of the story in pictures with the latest technologies of the show.

On the opening night of the event, the laser projections made ​​by Hyperreality will be screened onto the façade of Palazzo Massimo facing Piazza dei Cinquecento, staging the confrontation between monsters and heroes, which allude to the complexity of human soul and the resources of creative intelligence.

The animations will be also projected in the inner courtyard of the museum for the entire duration of the exhibition.

Opening times: 


Last admission at 19.00


Full price Euro 10.00 - reduced Euro 6.50

The ticket allows entrance to all the other seats of the Museo Nazionale Romano (Baths of Diocletian, Palazzo Altemps, Crypta Balbi) and is valid for 3 days.



Curated By: 
Rita Paris, Elisabetta Setari
Promoted By: 
Soprintendenza Speciale per i Beni Archeologici di Roma in collaboration with Electa