Browsing Category : Museums

Death and Memory: Kerameikos Museum


Kerameikos Archaeological Museum, Αρχαιολογικό Μουσείο Κεραμεικού, Athens, Greece If you have spent any time looking at the funerary stele at the National Archaeological Museum in Athens, you will have noticed that many were found in Kerameikos – the ancient cemetery of the city.  Over the years, my interest in stele has dipped in and out, but when I visited Greece…

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The Glories of Greece in Athens’ Benaki Museum


Benaki Museum, Μουσείο Μπενάκη, Athens, Greece In a beautiful white neo-classical house near the Greek Parliament and government offices, there lies a vast collection of beautiful and fascinating objects which show off the glory of Greek life through the ages.  This is not a state museum, underfunded and showing the need for investment, but a fine example of what all…

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Athens’ National Archaeological Museum Part Two: Gods and Mortals


…continued from Part One… The incredible collection of statues in the National Archaeological Museum shows the continuation of the Greek efforts to create three dimensional figures, first to depict deities, then to commemorate individuals. I know that a lot of people don’t like Archaic art – that is, the style that was in vogue before the Classical style, which is…

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Athens’ National Archaeological Museum Part One: Establishing Greece


National Archaeological Museum, Εθνικό Αρχαιολογικό Μουσείο, Athens, Greece When you’re in a city like Athens, you can’t help but feel spoilt for choice when it comes to museums.  In fact, I found it almost overwhelming trying to decide which were the must-visits of our week in the city.  The National Archaeological Museum was clearly top of the museum list –…

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Enigmatic Faces: The Museum of Cycladic Art in Athens


Museum of Cycladic Art, Μουσείο Κυκλαδικής Τέχνης, Athens, Greece There were so many museums in Athens that I was really looking forward to visiting, but funnily enough, the Museum of Cycladic Art was one that I was particularly keen on.  We’d passed it in the taxi on our way into the city when we arrived from the airport, and it…

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All Concept, No Knickers: a Trip to Marseille’s Mucem


Mucem: Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations, Musée des Civilisations de l’Europe et de la Méditerranée, Marseille, France Sometimes, when you see that there is a really hyped museum, you can’t help but be carried away by the idea that it’s going to be great.  Then, when you’re somewhat disappointed, you walk away feeling kinda grumpy.  And, if you’re me,…

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Continuous Tradition, Evolving Style: Christian Art in Athens


Byzantine and Christian Museum, Βυζαντινό και Χριστιανικό Μουσείο, Athens, Greece Having attempted to write an ill-fated PhD dissertation on early Christian art, I have a somewhat difficult relationship with the subject.  One the one hand, I find the whole subject of creating a visual language for a new religion fascinating, and on the other hand I associate it with the…

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Swedes on the High Seas: the Maritime History of a Nation in Stockholm


Maritime Museum, Sjöhistoriska museet, Stockholm, Sweden Maritime history, and the way that people have used the sea for exploration and trade, is fascinating.  I never really got it until I visited the oh-so wonderful Maritime Museum in Amsterdam.  Since then, if there is a museum on the subject, I’m there. Unfortunately none of the ones I’ve visited since have really…

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Exquisite Ancient Worlds: Basel’s Ancient Art Collection


Museum of Ancient Art and Ludwig Collection, Antikenmuseum Basel und Sammlung Ludwig, Basel, Switzerland Recently, Sister-Chickpea asked me why I’d never ended up writing up a post about the Basel Museum.  Honestly, it’s because I’ve had such a backlog of posts to write, I’d forgotten about it.  Then I found out that they were closing many of the galleries to…

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Roman Life in all its Forms in Lyon’s Lugdunum Museum


Lugdunum Museum, Lugdunum Musée, Lyon, France If you first approach the Lugdunum Museum from the base of the Roman Theatre, you may be struck by the bunker-like quality of the architecture.  Depending on your aesthetic sense, your heart may drop.  You may get a flashback to the days of the Cold War.  You may think, ‘Why?  O why?’ But don’t…

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Something For Everyone at Lyon’s Museum of Fine Art


Museum of Fine Arts, Musée des Beaux-Arts, Lyon, France Knowing that Lyon is one of France’s most culturally significant towns, I had high hopes for its Museum of Fine Art. The museum is housed in an important former abbey, which has its origins in the 6th century.  In 1659, the abbess Anne de Chaulnes began construction of the Royal Abbey…

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