The National Museum announced recently it will be bringing together to the Australian capital next year a major exhibition of artefacts from ancient Greece, capping off a series of shows from the British Museum.
In keeping with the Olympic theme of 2020, Ancient Greeks: Athletes, Warriors and Heroes will feature 170 objects exploring the theme of competition through sports, politics, drama, music and warfare.
National Museum director Mathew Trinca said many of the works in this show had never travelled to the southern hemisphere.
“I think it would be fair to say that the British Museum places particular store on its ongoing relationship with the National Museum,” he said to Canberra Times.
He said among the standout objects would be a marble study of one of one of the best-known Greek athletic statues, Dior Dionis, a bust of the playwright Euripides, and a terracotta vase with finely drawn depictions of athletes.
Trinca said the vase was been the ancient equivalent of today’s Olympic gold medal.
“This would have been filled with olive oil and given to the victor of the Athenian Games as a prize, and it dates from the 4th century BC,” he said.
“We are delighted to bring Ancient Greeks to east coast audiences, who I know will be mesmerised by the stories of competition in the ancient Greek world and by the beautiful depictions of athletes, the ceramics, sculptures, armour and jewellery featured in the show,” he added.