To Live Forever: Egyptian Treasures from the Brooklyn Museum Opens Oct. 7, 2011

More than 100 Artifacts Included in Exhibition; Full Slate of Programs Planned

NASHVILLE, Tenn., Aug. 24, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Frist Center for the Visual Arts again welcomes a spectacular exhibition of Egyptian art and artifacts as To Live Forever: Egyptian Treasures from the Brooklyn Museum opens in the Ingram Gallery Oct. 7, 2011, and remains on view through Jan. 8, 2012.

To Live Forever was organized by the Brooklyn Museum and includes 119 objects selected from its renowned collection of ancient Egyptian art.  

"It is so exciting to have our second major Egyptian exhibition at the Frist Center," said Executive Director Susan H. Edwards, Ph.D.  "The allure of Egypt is wonderfully compelling, as we learned in 2006 when The Quest for Immortality: Treasures of Ancient Egypt was on view at the Frist.  People are utterly fascinated by this most-ancient civilization.  To Live Forever offers a different context from which to view and learn more about ancient Egyptians and the belief system they shared, rich and poor, alike."

One of the primary cultural tenets through thousands of years of ancient Egyptian civilization was a belief in the afterlife and the view that death was an enemy that could be vanquished. To Live Forever includes objects that illustrate a range of strategies the ancient Egyptians developed to defeat death. It explores mummification and the rituals performed in the tomb to assist the deceased in defying death, as well as examining what the Egyptians believed they would find in the next world.

Tombs and mummification rituals were not solely reserved for pharaohs and Egyptian royalty; Egyptians of various classes also prepared for the afterlife, although with far less opulence.

To Live Forever explores the economics of the Egyptian funeral and contrasts how rich and poor,

according to their means, prepared for the hereafter.  Egyptian funerals are examined with

examples of the ways the poor tried to imitate the costly appearance of the grave goods of the wealthy in order to ensure a better place in the afterlife.

The exhibition is a study in contrasts. Visitors will be able to compare finely painted wood and stone coffins made for the rich with the clay coffins the poor made for themselves; masterfully worked granite vessels with clay vessels painted in imitation, and gold jewelry created for nobles with earthenware amulets fashioned from man-made turquoise substitutes.

Objects on view include the vividly painted coffin of a mayor of Thebes; the mummy and mummy portrait of Demetrios, a wealthy citizen of Hawara; the Bird Lady, one of the oldest preserved statues from all Egyptian history and a signature Brooklyn Museum object; a painted limestone relief of Queen Neferu; a gilded, glass and faience mummy cartonnage (mask fashioned of plastered layers of papyrus or fiber) of a woman; the elaborately painted shroud of Neferhotep; a gilded mummy mask of a man; and a gold amulet representing the human soul.

Exhibition Catalog
The exhibition will be accompanied by a catalog written by Edward Bleiberg, Curator of Egyptian Art at the Brooklyn Museum and organizer of the exhibition.  The recipient of an M.A. and Ph.D. in Egyptology from the University of Toronto, Dr. Bleiberg is the author of several books and scholarly articles.  The catalog is published by the Brooklyn Museum in association with D. Giles Ltd., London.

Education Gallery
Egypt and the Creation of Desire is a companion exhibition created by Frist Center Curator of Interpretation Anne Taylor that will examine people's continued fascination with ancient Egypt. Located in the Ingram Gallery adjacent to the main exhibition, Egypt and the Creation of Desire explores Egypt and its role in the creation and manufacture of desire—a desire to go, a desire to have, a desire for fame and immortality, and a desire to understand and unlock the mystery—through travel posters and souvenirs, twentieth-century advertisements, and popular comic books and movies.

Audio Tour
The Frist Center has produced an audio tour to accompany To Live Forever and Egypt and the Creation of Desire.  This tour has been recorded and editing in collaboration with Ocean Way Recording Studios at Belmont University.

Exhibition Credits
To Live Forever: Egyptian Treasures from the Brooklyn Museum has been organized by the Brooklyn Museum.

Exhibition Sponsors
The Frist Center gratefully acknowledges the exhibition sponsors:
Platinum Sponsor:  The HCA Foundation on behalf of HCA and the TriStar Family of Hospitals
Gold Sponsor:  Barbara and Jack Bovender
Silver Sponsor:  Cracker Barrel Foundation
Hospitality Sponsor:  Union Station, a Wyndham Historic Hotel
The Frist Center for the Visual Arts is supported in part by the Metro Nashville Arts Commission and the Tennessee Arts Commission.

ALSO OPENING OCT. 7, 2011:

Cuban-born Artist Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons' Photographs and Multi-Media Works Tell Story of the Survival of African Cultures

Exhibition opens Oct. 7 in Gordon Contemporary Artists Project Gallery

The Frist Center for the Visual Arts' Gordon Contemporary Artists Project Gallery features the work of Cuban-born artist Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons in an exhibition entitled Journeys from Oct. 7, 2011-January 8, 2012.

Campos-Pons is recognized for her photographs and multi-media installations that poignantly explore her personal history as well as collective ethnic, racial, national, and sexual identities.  Her work symbolically follows the  African diaspora from her family's origin in Nigeria to Cuba, where they worked in the sugar industry, to present day Boston, where Campos-Pons now lives and teaches art.

"Magda's work tells a powerful story of struggle and survival by evoking rituals, myths and narratives that have evolved over numerous generations," said Frist Center Curator Katie Delmez.  "Though the inspiration is her own family's journey, the compelling images and ideas about identity behind them are meant to resonate with a broader audience. She also uses her work to reveal histories often ignored or undervalued by official authorities."

Spoken Softly with Mama (1998), an installation composed of photographs and videos projected onto ironing boards, embroidered folded linens, and cast glass irons, is an evocative meditation on the contributions of women's labor—in their own homes as well as their employers'—and the stories shared during these potentially intimate times together. . There is a sense of longing in the work, not only for a nurturing and perhaps less complicated time, but for the people themselves who are now removed from the artist by death or displacement.

Campos-Pons moves from personal narrative to collective experience in a new piece, Sugar/Bittersweet, that reflects on the Cuban sugar industry. The installation is composed of African spears encircled by disks of raw sugar and cast glass set into antique African and Chinese wooden stools. The forms suggest both a field of tall, slender sugar cane and the upright figures of the hundreds of thousands of Africans, including the artist's great-great grandfather, who were brought to Cuba to work in the slave-based labor system.

De Las Dos Aguas is an assemblage of twelve large-format Polaroid photographs reflects the journeys across two bodies of water taken by the artist and her ancestors to new lands. Standing in front of a bright blue backdrop reminiscent of the clear Caribbean waters, Campos-Pons holds a carved wooden boat with four passengers that symbolize Yoruban deities as well as the millions of other people affected by global displacement.

Activities at Vanderbilt University
Campos-Pons will do a residency at Vanderbilt University from October 10 through 19 as a Visiting Resource Professor for the Center for Latin American Studies.  While at Vanderbilt, she will participate in a K-12 teacher workshop and will work with closely with Senior Art majors to produce a multidisciplinary performance piece that will take place throughout campus and involve students, faculty and staff.  

On October 12, Campos-Pons will anchor a roundtable with Vanderbilt Historian Jane Landers, Art Historian Vivien Fryd, and others on the black experience in Latin America.  

Campos-Pons' residency at Vanderbilt is a collaboration between CLAS, the Department of Art, the Fine Arts Gallery, the Curb Center, the Department of History of Art, the Program for African American and Diaspora Studies, the Circum-Atlantic Studies Seminar, and the College of Arts and Sciences.  Additional details are a available at CLAS website: http://www.vanderbilt.edu/clas/.

About Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons

Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons was born in Matanzas, Cuba in 1959.  She attended the Escuela Nacional de Arte and the Instituto Superior de Arte before studies as an exchange student at the Massachusetts College of Art brought her to the U.S. in 1988.  She has lived and worked in Boston since 1991.

A cross collaboration with musician, composer and husband, Neil Leonard, that started in 1988, has complemented and enriched the scope of Campos-Pons' work. Together they founded GASP, a lab and studio for the 21st century. She has lectured from the Tate Modern to the Brooklyn Museum and the School of Art in Dakar.

Campos-Pons has been exhibited internationally since 1984 when she won the Honorable Mention at the XVIII Cagnes-sur-Mer Painting Competition in France, and the Bunting Fellowship in Visual Arts at Harvard 1993; solo shows followed at MoMA, the Venice Biennale 2001, Johannesburg Biennial, the First Liverpool Biennial, the Dak'ART Biennial in Senegal; most recently the Guangzhou Triennial in China hosted her work. A 20-year retrospective of Campos-Pons' work, Everything is Separated by Water: Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons, opened in Indianapolis in 2006 and traveled to the Bass Museum in Miami.

She currently teaches painting at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts Boston.

Exhibition Credit
This exhibition was organized by the Frist Center for the Visual Arts.

Sponsors
Gordon Contemporary Artists Project Gallery Sponsor: Morgan Keegan

The Frist Center for the Visual Arts is supported in part by the Metropolitan Nashville Arts Commission and the Tennessee Arts Commission.

Related Public Program

Friday, October 7, 12:00 p.m.: Curator's Perspective: Living Forever in Ancient Egypt
Presented by Dr. Edward Bleiberg, curator of Egyptian, Classical, and Ancient Middle Eastern Art at the Brooklyn Museum
Auditorium, Free; seating is first come, first served.

Death was an enemy that ancient Egyptians believed they could beat. They prepared for their deaths by living a just life and assembling specific objects for their tombs.  Dr. Edward Bleiberg, curator of To Live Forever: Egyptian Treasures from the Brooklyn Museum, will explore these spiritual and material objects and requirements, and how Egyptians of all classes struggled to live forever. 

Friday, October 14,  6:00 p.m.: Performance by Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons
Auditorium
Free; seating is first come, first served

Maria Magdalena Campos-Pons will present an intimate performance art piece at the Frist Center in relation to her exhibition Journeys, on view in the Gordon Contemporary Artists Project Gallery from October 7, 2011 to January 8, 2012.  The Cuban-born Campos-Pons creates photographs, video and multimedia installations that tell the story of the survival of African cultures by evoking rites, myths and narratives that have evolved through generations. Her work symbolically follows the history of the slave trade by drawing on her own family's origin in Nigeria then to Cuba, where she was born and where her ancestors worked as slaves in the sugar industry, to present-day Boston, where Campos-Pons now teaches art.  

Sunday, October 16, 1:00–5:30 p.m.: Egypt Family Day
Free

Enjoy a fun-filled day of excitement with friends and family including special art-making activities and performances celebrating ancient and contemporary Egyptian culture.

Thursday, October 20, 12:00 p.m.: Curator's Tour: To Live Forever: Egyptian Treasures from the Brooklyn Museum
Free with purchase of gallery admission
Meet at exhibition entrance.

Join Mark Scala, chief curator at the Frist Center, for a tour of this exhibition that explores how ancient Egyptians of all classes struggled to live forever. Complete your afternoon with lunch or visiting with friends in the café.

Thursday, October 27, 6:00–8:30 p.m.: Adult Studio Workshop: Jewelry in This World and

the Netherworld.  Guest artist: Ruth Zelanski
Frist Center Studios
$45 members/$70 non-members.
Cost includes all supplies and gallery admission.
Advance registration required.
Please call 615.744.3342 to register.

Jewelry was more than a fashion statement for ancient Egyptians. While used to adorn the body, it also contained symbols that would provide the wearer—dead or alive—with protection and prosperity. In this workshop, participants will visit the exhibition To Live Forever: Egyptian Treasures from the Brooklyn Museum and will learn about the different types of jewelry worn by the ancient Egyptians in this world and the netherworld. Everyone will then head to the studios to fabricate their own wire-wrapped jewelry to ward off evil and protect the wearer!

Thursday, November 3, 6:30 p.m.: "The Ancient Egyptian Mummy: A Defense Against Tomb Robbery"  Presented by Egyptologist Dr. Kara Cooney
Auditorium
Free; seating is first come, first served.

About 1000 BCE in Ancient Egypt, the wealthy residents of Thebes began to favor complicated and enhanced mummification techniques: False eyes of stone were placed in the heads of the deceased, embalmers stuffed the shriveled limbs and torsos of the dead to make them appear full and lifelike, skin was plastered and then painted, and false hair was carefully woven into the hair of the departed. Such elaborate embalming techniques reached an apex in the Egyptian Twenty-First Dynasty, though no one quite knows why. In this talk, Egyptologist Dr. Kara Cooney, star of Planet Green's "Out of Egypt" and consultant to the TV series "Lost," will suggest that this degree of body preservation became popular because of the increased risk of tomb robbery. Investments in mummification may have provided psychological security for elites who intended to perfectly preserve for eternity the flesh and bones of the deceased, even if all their burial goods were stolen.

Saturday, November 12, 10:30 a.m., 1:00 p.m., or 3:00 p.m.: Kids Club: Paint Like an Egyptian
Frist Center Studios
Free
Registration required.
Call 615.744.3357 to reserve a space.

Designed for 5–10 year olds, the Frist Center Kids Club offers exciting opportunities for children to discover, explore, and create art. Free membership includes a Kids Club card, rewards for participation, hands-on activities in the Martin ArtQuest Gallery, and monthly projects in the art studios. Featured activity: Discover painting materials and techniques inspired by ancient Egyptians and use colors, patterns, and texture to invent a timeless work of art. Connects to the exhibition To Live Forever: Egyptian Treasures from the Brooklyn Museum.

Thursday, December 8, 6:00–8:30 p.m.: Adult Studio Workshop: Exploring Encaustic Painting
(Introductory-level class. No experience required.)
Frist Center Studios
$50 members/$75 non-members.  
Cost includes all supplies and gallery admission.
Advance registration required.  Please call 615.744.3342 to register.

From Egyptian mummy portraits to collages by Jasper Johns, artists across time have used the luscious and adaptable medium of encaustic in a variety of ways. Encaustic paintings use the ancient technique of combining melted beeswax, resin, and pigments to create a surface that can be built up to make translucent and textured layers.  During this workshop participants will have the rare opportunity to view an encaustic mummy portrait in the exhibition To Live Forever:  Egyptian Treasures from the Brooklyn Museum, and then have fun using a simplified version of the medium themselves.  

Friday, December 9, 7:00 p.m.: ARTini: To Live Forever: Egyptian Treasures from the Brooklyn Museum
Meet at exhibition entrance.
Free with purchase of gallery admission.

Join Anne Taylor, curator of interpretation at the Frist Center, as she leads an informal conversation about some of the work included in the Egypt exhibition. Complete your evening by relaxing in the Grand Lobby with beverages from the cafe, including special ARTinis, and visiting with friends.

Are you curious about art? Do you want to learn more about the content and concepts behind an artist's work? If you answered yes to either of those questions, then the ARTini program is for you! ARTinis are designed for everyone—from the novice to the connoisseur—and include informal and insightful conversations that offer a deeper understanding of one or two works of art in an exhibition.

Tuesday, December 13, 10:30–11:30 a.m.: Making Memories: To Live Forever: Egyptian Treasures from the Brooklyn Museum
Free with required registration.
Call 615.744.3357 to reserve a space.

It is estimated that 5.1 million Americans have Alzheimer's. Because 70 percent of those with the disease live at home, the impact of the illness extends to millions of family members, friends, and caregivers. The Frist Center for the Visual Arts is partnering with the Middle Tennessee

Alzheimer's Association to provide exhibition tours to early stage Alzheimer's patients and their care givers.

Featured Program: This program focuses on the exhibition To Live Forever and offers participants an outlet for expression and forum for dialogue through guided exhibition tours and gallery discussions.

Tuesday, December 13, 12:00 p.m.: ARTini: To Live Forever: Egyptian Treasures from the Brooklyn Museum
Meet at exhibition entrance.
Free with purchase of gallery admission.

Join Anne Taylor, curator of interpretation at the Frist Center, as she leads an informal conversation about some of the work included in the Egypt exhibition. Complete your visit with a stop in the cafe or gift shop.

Are you curious about art? Do you want to learn more about the content and concepts behind an artist's work? If you answered yes to either of those questions, then the ARTini program is for you! ARTinis are designed for everyone—from the novice to the connoisseur—and include informal and insightful conversations that offer a deeper understanding of one or two works of art in an exhibition.

About the Frist Center

Accredited by the American Association of Museums, the Frist Center for the Visual Arts, located at 919 Broadway in downtown Nashville, Tenn., is an art exhibition center dedicated to presenting the finest visual art from local, regional, U.S. and international sources in a program of changing exhibitions. The Frist Center's Martin ArtQuest Gallery features interactive stations relating to Frist Center exhibitions. Gallery admission to the Frist Center is free for visitors 18 and younger and to Frist Center members. Frist Center admission is $10.00 for adults and $7.00 for seniors, military and college students with ID.  College students are admitted free Thursday and Friday evenings (with the exception of Frist Fridays), 5–9 p.m.  Discounts are offered for groups of 10 or more with advance reservation by calling (615) 744-3247. The Frist Center is open seven days a week: Mondays through Wednesdays, and Saturdays, 10 a.m.–5:30 p.m.; Thursdays and Fridays, 10 a.m.–9 p.m. and Sundays, 1–5:30 p.m., with the Frist Center Cafe opening at noon. Additional information is available by calling (615) 244-3340 or by visiting our Web site at www.fristcenter.org.

SOURCE Frist Center for the Visual Arts



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