Built according to the designs of the architect Gae Aulenti and inaugurated in April 2001, the station is presented as a sequence of essential volumes of red plaster and vesuvian stone that remind us of different street level, evoking through its colour and materials the nearby National Archeological Museum. The interior, like in Dante station, is characterised by white glass facing and steel finishing.
The atrium of the station houses a fibreglass cast, created by the Naples Academy of Fine Arts, of the Farnese Hercules, while just inside the secondary entrance is a bronze cast of the monumental Horse Head called “Carafa”.
Moving throughthe hallways towards the National Archeological Museum, the black and white photographs of Mimmo Jodice anticipate the voyage to the ancient world with Anamnesis and with the series of Athletes and Dancers, works in which the Neapolitan master evokes the famous sculptures from the Villa of the Papyruses of Herculaneum and kept in the nearby museum.
In the upper entrance is located the bronze reproduction of Laocoön, that the Historic Chiurazzi foundry created based upon the ancient chalk cast kept in the Gipsoteca of the Naples Academy of Fine Arts. Behind the sculpture the large black and white photographs of Mimmo Jodice re-examine and enlarge details of the work, offering new suggestions for its interpretation.
The connecting corridor with the National Archeological Museum houses “Neapolis Station”, the didactic exposition on archaeological sites discovered during the course of excavation work during the construction of Line 1, and in particular the stations of Municipio, Toledo; Università and Duomo. The archaeological remains belonged to two primary settlements: Partenope, founded by Cuman colonists on Pizzofalcone Rock around the middle of the 7th Century before the common era, and Neapolis, erected between via Foria and Corso Umberto between the end of the sixth and beginning of the fifth centuries BCE. The corridor that connects Museo Station with Cavour Station on Line 2 houses a selection of works by four artists, all from Campania and different generations, among the movers and shakers of modern photography.Luciano D’Alessandro is present with nine works which highlight some the most significant moments of his career as a photographic journalist, characterized by a constant and empathetic attention to the human condition, from Vendor of Small Paper Birds, made in 1953, to Cemetery of the Normandy Landings, Saint Laurent, from 1994.
Proceeding down the corridor, we come across India ’70 by Fabio Donato, a series of shots taken during a youthful voyage in India. Also on display are three works which bear witness to close relationship between the Neapolitan photographer and Neapolitan art and theatre: Be Quick, with the gallery owner Lucio Amelio in front of the famous work by Andy Warhol, Eduardo and Masaniello, which captures a historic theatrical performance from 1976 starring Mariano Rigillo.
The Polyptychs of Antonio Biasucci incorporates more photos into a single work in which the artist offers us a closer perception of things, almost in direct contact with their skin and bodies, as if to rediscover the secret of primeval physicality.
At the end of the artistic itinerary leading to line 2, there are photographs by Raffaela Mariniello, from which emerge the image of silent and motionless suburbs. Hand-me-down Amusement Park Ride, On the Beach, Dresser, and Frames isolate the particulars on which the focus lens has stopped, and these convey not so much the a fragment of life, so much as an image gifted with its own autonomy and an accomplished formal organisation.