Altes Museum Presents Collection of Classical Antiquities

. March 25, 2011 . 0 Comments

Greek, Roman and Etruscan art and sculptures can be found in the Altes Museum. The thematically arranged exhibition includes stone sculptures, clay and bronze figures, friezes, vases, gold jewellery and silverware. Three information displays provide details on additional topics such as Greek myths, ancient city culture and the archaeological sites investigated by the Berlin museums.

The tour through the new exhibition, on view until further notice, on the main floor of the Altes Museum starts with the ‘Age of Heroes’, from 1000 to 700 BCE. Statues of warriors and helmets stand alongside images of griffins and lions that are distinctly Eastern in character. Right from the outset, the visitor’s gaze is drawn towards the next rooms containing archaic temples and tomb monuments dating from the 6th century BCE, in the form of a ‘Holy Way’ that leads to the colossal kouros of Didyma, where the colourful ‘Berlin Goddess’ can also be seen looking the ‘Sabouroff Head’ straight in the eye.

The world inhabited by gods, heroes and myths from the classical era unfold before the visitor’s eyes in the north room, in a blaze of spectacular, well known vase paintings and sculptures. In the centre of this section, the ‘Praying Boy’ stands encircled by masterpieces of the art of classical antiquity, such as the spear bearer and the Amazon by Polykleitos, as well as vases by such master potters as Andokides and Euphronios. The section ‘Life and Death in Athens’, meanwhile, sheds light on all facets of everyday life in the capital of classical antiquity.

The theatre in Greece and Southern Italy leads us to the Greeks in the West, with the throned goddess from Tarent taking centre stage. In the section on Hellenism, the rulers are juxtaposed with ordinary people – in portraits and the recreation of the worlds they inhabited. Following on from that, the finds from houses in Priene, the ‘Pompeii of Asia Minor’, have also been rearranged to form a new lively display.

The Altes Museum, built between 1823 and 1830 after the design by Karl Friedrich Schinkel, is one of the most important works in the architecture of Classicism. With a lucidly ordered exterior and an interior structure of great precision after the Ancient Greek style, Schinkel pursued Humboldt’s idea of the museum as an educational institution open to the public

www.smb.museum

Category: Antiquities

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