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Hidden Marvels of the Louvre Museum: Part 4 - Late Roman and Christian Art with Dr. Guillaume Durand

Hidden Marvels of the Louvre Museum: Part 4 - Late Roman and Christian Art with Dr. Guillaume Durand


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The iconic museum of Paris, the Louvre, is especially known for its master painters such as Da Vinci, Raphael, David, Delacroix, or Géricault, as well as some ancient sculptures like the Venus of Milo or the Victory of Samothrace. Apart from these masterpieces which attract millions of tourists every year, this maze-like museum conceals stunning marvels from Antiquity and the Medieval period in its less crowded wings and rooms.

In this five-part series, featuring stand-alone but complementary lectures, join archaeologist and art historian Guillaume Durand in the discovery of these hidden marvels. Each lecture will put into historical context the artistic culture(s) covered as well as the evolution of the collection since the opening of this 12th century palace as a public gallery in 1793. Participants will come away with a thoughtful and refined understanding of Ancient and Early Medieval art in Europe and around the Mediterranean with the eye of a connoisseur.

Part 4 – Late Roman and Christian Art in the Eastern Mediterranean
Originally divided between the Eastern Antiquities and Roman Antiquities, the Louvre recently created in 2022 a new department dedicated to the arts of Byzantium and the Eastern Christians. This 9th department should open in 2025-2026 and will exhibit 1,200 objects including several masterpieces. Forecasting this future opening, we will pay attention to some of these artworks which should constitute this new collection, among them the Barberini Ivory (c. 525-550 CE, Constantinople) and the impressive mosaics of the church of Qabr hiram (c. 550-600 CE, Lebanon), as well as some of the masterpieces such as the Egyptian Fayum mummy portraits, which are currently displayed in the basements of the Denon wing.

Passionate about the regions and countries at the crossroad of civilizations, Guillaume Durand, Ph.D. has long-standing expertise in Ancient art and archaeology of the Eastern Mediterranean Basin. Assistant dean and professor in archaeology and art history at the Institute for American Universities and the American College of the Mediterranean in Aix-en-Provence, France, Guillaume has traveled many times in Iran during these six past years in order to study the Persian Empires. He is also a tourist guide and lecturer in this country for French citizens.

This conversation is suitable for all ages.

90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.

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