Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Classic Greek Theatre Relics at Capital Museum, in Beijing.

China is living a World cultural fever, receiving every two or three months exhibitions of important cultural institutions from all over the world. This time Le Musée du Louvre and the French Government brought part of the great Classic Greek Art collection that belongs to this museum.

Dozens of ancient copies (First and Second Centuries a.C.) of important Classic Greek masterpieces were exhibited during July and August 2007 at Capital Museum in Beijing.

Many of these pieces were related to Classic Greek Theatre: small reproductions of comedy actors and masks, some amphora depicting scenes from tragedies (Aeschylus' Oresteia and Euripides' Medea), and sculpted busts of some of the greatest playwrights in ancient Greece (Sophocles, Euripides, Aristophanes).

A short but enlightening exhibition. Someone working in theatre or a theatre lover would find this experience very exciting and almost unique.

Of course I had some strange feeling watching that double bust with the heads of Aristophanes and Sophocles, or that sculpture of Euripides sitting with the list of his plays to the sides. I have to confess that I had one favorite piece, a kind of "unconscious" predilection: the amphora depicting one scene of the Tragedy of Medea, her killing one of her sons; fascinating depiction, simple, but powerful.

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