Allison Katz

Pompeii Circumstance: Posters 1-7

Allison Katz, Pompeii Circumstance (Milk glass), 2023, artist’s poster shot in situ at the Archaeological Park of Pompeii, January 2023, Photo Amedeo Benestante. Courtesy the Artist and the Archaeological Park of Pompeii

Pompeii Commitment. Archaeological Matters – the first long-term, contemporary art program established by the Archaeological Park of Pompeii – has launched a yearly series of Digital Fellowships, facilitating artistic and curatorial research within Pompeii’s uniquely trans-temporal, multi-species, and deeply entangled context.

Over the course of four months, artist Allison Katz had an opportunity to focus on multiple lines of inquiry in the context of the Archaeological Park of Pompeii, joining the past and present lives of the site in its multitude of symbologies and expressions in the present day: from being a charged and revered repository of Ancient Roman culture, subject of centuries of global scholarship, to performing as a contemporary mass tourist destination; from evoking the fragility of the human condition to being a linguistic construct in the word ‘Pompeii’. Embarking on this new research has brought Katz to confront questions beyond her ongoing interest in Ancient Roman painting – which had already manifested in some of her earlier works such as Be nice (2022), Cocteau (2021), and The Four Styles (2011).

Katz’s Digital Fellowship provides a first attempt at articulating a reflection on what it means for the artist to be engaging with the complexities of Pompeian heritage and the legacy of its artistic styles that determined foundational codes of form, beauty and iconography in the Western art historical discourse. The artist has created a new series of seven posters through a process of graphic design and digital collage that brings together her own photographs taken during her September 2022 visit to Pompeii and its archaeological storage units; book pages from old Pompeii catalogues; the eyes of a young girl from a 1904 painting by Paula Modersohn–Becker; and Katz’ own paintings, recently shown at the Venice Biennale 2022. An additional layer is brought to her new series of posters by installing and photographing them in different locations on site at Pompeii, as well as making one of them – Pompeii Circumstance (Milk glass) – available for download on the portal in high-res printing resolution.

Allison Katz
Pompeii Circumstance: Posters 1-7
Digital Fellowship 03
Pompeii Commitment 2023



Curated by Andrea Viliani e Stella Bottai,
with Laura Mariano and Caterina Avataneo
in collaboration with CURA.

Season I
Formafantasma, Allison Katz, Legacy Russell,
Miao Ying, Anri Sala, Rose Salane, Sissel Toolas
June 2022 — July 2023