On loan from The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, casts in the Schatten Gallery exhibition "Heroes of the Greek Polis" offer the Emory community and visitors alike a chance to see a central theme in Greek art, as well as in its philosophy, literature and religion--the human being. The exhibition is on view through Aug. 31.
The objects in the exhibition are plaster casts that were formed directly from the original sculptures. Although not originals themselves, plaster casts are an invaluable resource for studying sculpture and architecture. A popular way to preserve sculpture and make it available to private homes, museums and educational facilities, the plaster cast peaked in popularity in the 19th century when The Metropolitan Museum acquired the casts that will be on display at Emory. Although they declined in popularity with the advent of Modernism, plaster casts have re-emerged to become essential tools for the study of classical art.
"Heroes of the Greek Polis (city)" feature the mythological giants of Herakles, Perseus and Theseus, for example, and also mortals, who could achieve a kind of heroic status through remarkable displays of arete (innate excellence) by emerging victorious from a great agon or contest. Through the representation of the ideal human figure, the exhibition explores the way in which ancient Greek sculptors represented both agon and arete during the Archaic through the High Classical periods (c. 600-430 B.C.).
The project is a joint venture of Schatten Gallery, Carlos Museum and the classics department. Admission is free. For information, call 727-6868.
-- Joyce Bell