April 2022 – The destruction of Roman Pompeii in A.D. 79, when Mount Vesuvius buried the city in volcanic ash, was a horrific event. Plaster casts made of hollows in the dense ash, the spaces once filled by corpses, reveal the death agonies of Romans who didn’t get out in time. It’s been easy for modern museums to sensationalize the city’s last days, but the Institute for the Study of the Ancient World has taken a very different approach. As the title of this gem of a show indicates, we’re invited to contemplate not the death of Pompeii but its vibrant, ebullient life.