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"Alexander the Great: 2000 years of treasures" opens next week in Sydney

Alexander The Great: 2000 years of treasures celebrates the man, his journey and legacy of one of history’s most enigmatic and important figures through objects and works of art. Only in Sydney at The Australian Museum from 24 November 2012.

"Alexander the Great: 2000 years of treasures" opens next week in Sydney
Alexander the Great Hunting a Wild Boar, 1st century AD. [Credit: Hermitage State Museum]
“Massive resources are involved in bringing this exhibition from St Petersburg to Sydney,” says Frank Howarth, Director of the Australian Museum. “The artefacts will come in three shipments, each taking over three days to reach Sydney by air, with much of the road route overseen by police escort. There will be a total of 29 curators and conservators accompanying the exhibition to and from Australia – quite apart from our own team working on the project at the Australian Museum.”

Professor Dr Mikhail B. Piotrovskjy, Director, State Hermitage Museum said “There are few heroes in the history of the world that have not been cast down in recent years. Alexander the Great has, so far, escaped such a fate and even Hollywood films tell his story with the admiration and reverence of authors of antiquity. Alexander’s conquests gave birth in East and West to an incredible synthesis of cultures and even of belief systems. This synthesis – Hellenistic culture – was marvelous in itself, but it was moreover that which laid the basis for the world’s further development, a development which led to Christian culture in its broadest sense and even to Islamic culture.”

“The Age of Alexander’ was a century of political, philosophical and artistic creativity. Magnificent states, new towns and cities, brilliant thinkers, amazing artists. The Hermitage is proud of its collection of works with connections to Alexander. With this exhibition, the Hermitage demonstrates the potential of a museum that is not just large, not just universal, but encyclopaedic.”

Sydney’s Assoc. Prof. Ken Sheedy, ancient historian and Director of the Australian Centre for Ancient Numismatic Studies at Macquarie University, knows the collection in St Petersburg well and is excited about what will be a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for many Australians:

“The Alexander exhibition brings to Sydney some of the finest known treasures from the court and cities of Alexander the Great and his Successors. Alexander’s remarkable empire, stretching from the Mediterranean across to India, was carved out in battles and campaigns waged over a few short years. It barely outlasted his death at the age of 32, but its legacy is still with us today. The Hermitage holds one of the finest antiquities collections in the world and this exhibition has been brilliantly curated by Dr Anna Trofimova, the museum’s Head of the Department of Classical Antiquities, working alongside Professor Dr Mikhail B. Piotrovskjy, Director, State Hermitage Museum.”

Source: Australian Museum [November 16, 2012]

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