‘Bronze’ takes gold: Leicester art historian curates Royal Academy exhibition

Posted by pt91 at Sep 21, 2012 10:35 AM |
Professor David Ekserdjian traces bronze in art through the millennia
‘Bronze’ takes gold: Leicester art historian curates Royal Academy exhibition

Portrait Head of King Seuthes III, Early Hellenistic period, Thracian, Late fourth - early third centuries BCE Bronze, copper, alabaster and glass paste, 32.5 x 24 cm National Institute of Archaeology and Museum, Bulgarian Academy of Sciences,

Issued by University of Leicester Press Office on 21 September 2012

For images from the exhibition please contact Johanna Bennett, Royal Academy Press Office: T: 020 7300 5615, E: press.office@royalacademy.org.uk

Forget winning gold - Bronze has taken centre stage in a new exhibition at the Royal Academy co-curated by a University of Leicester art historian and writer.

Professor David Ekserdjian, Professor of Art History at the University’s Department of the History of Art and Film, had the initial idea and helped select the 150 bronze works spanning 5,000 years of history which make up Bronze.

The exhibition, which started this week and will run until December 9, brings together pieces from Asia, Africa and Europe and includes important discoveries as well as archaeological excavations. Many of the pieces have never been seen in the UK.

Different sections focus on the Human Figure, Animals, Groups, Objects, Reliefs, Gods, Heads and Busts. The exhibition features stunning Ancient Greek, Roman and Etruscan bronzes, through to rare survivals from the Medieval period.

The Renaissance is represented by the works of artists such as Ghiberti, Donatello, Cellini, and later Giambologna, De Vries and others. Bronzes by Rodin, Boccioni, Picasso, Jasper Johns, Moore and Bourgeois are representative of the best from the 19th century to today.

Professor Ekserdjian has published books on Correggio, Parmigianino, and still-life painting in the Renaissance, and is a Trustee of the National Gallery, London and the Tate.

He is also a member of the Department of Culture, Media and Sport’s Reviewing Committee on the Export of Works of Art.

He said: “One of the reasons Bronze has been used by so many artists throughout history is because it is very durable. It offers more possibilities than materials like marble or stone – you can do things like have two figures balanced on one foot. It is also very interesting because it allows you to compare European art with non-European art. You can compare people working in similar ways but in different places.

“We have tried to get the best examples from all the different places it has been used. The response has been incredibly enthusiastic. I am particularly fond of the Trundholm sun chariot from Denmark, the Etruscan bronze of the Chimera of Arezzo, a portrait of the barbarian king Seuthes III which was only discovered in 2004, and The Dancing Satyr, a Greek statue.

“The Royal Academy is a totally fantastic place to be curating an exhibition. They have shown great courage in taking this show on.”

Ends

Notes:

For further information and images on Bronze at the Royal Academy of Arts please contact Johanna Bennett, Royal Academy Press Office:

T: 020 7300 5615

E: press.office@royalacademy.org.uk

www.royalacademy.org.uk

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