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"Archaic Colors" at the Acropolis museum

Athens, Greece
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"Archaic Colors" at the Acropolis museum

. www.breathtakingathens.com/node/5001591 .

From 31 July 2012 until 31 July 2013, the Acropolis Museum conducts research on its unique collection of archaic statues, which retain their colors to a small or large degree, and opens a very extensive discussion with the public and various experts on color, its technical issues, its detection using new technologies, its experimental use on marble surfaces, its digital reconstruction, its meaning, as well as the archaic period's aesthetic perception of color. So far, scientific research into the color found on ancient sculpture has made great progress and reached surprising conclusions that to a large degree refute the stereotypical assumptions regarding ancient sculpture. It turns out that color, far from being just a simple decorative element, added to the sculpture's aesthetic quality.

For ancient Greeks and their society, color constituted a way to characterize various attributes. The blond hair of the gods projected their power; the brown skin of warriors and athletes was a sign of virtue and valor, while the white skin of the korai expressed the grace and radiance of youth.

The Μuseum's initiative on Archaic Colors is based on very careful observation, on spectroscopic analysis, on special photography sessions, on efforts to reproduce the colors of antiquity and then to apply them on Parian marble, and naturally, on searching through written sources for valuable information on the pigments.

The statues' crisp, saturated colors, on bright garments and tender bodies, combined with the rich jewelry, frequently made of metal, and elaborately curled hair created a singular aesthetic pleasure, making the archaic statues "wonderful to behold" for the people of the period.

Gallery Talks

Brief presentations which focus on "Archaic Colors" are held by Museum archaeologists - hosts, with rich visual material, both in Greek and English.

Family Backpack «Archaic Colors»

On the occasion of the initiative on Archaic Colors, the Museum invites families to discover the archaic colors through the following games:

1. The game of discovering details in archaic statues, where color is preserved.

2. A painting box, which contains original mineral colors and pencils for children to colour the Peplos Kore.

3. The DOMINO with some of the designs - in a variety of colors freely selected - that decorated mainly the clothing and earrings of the archaic korai.

Color the Peplos Kore

Visitors also have the opportunity to continue participating in the "Archaic Colors" initiative from home, through the online digital interactive game "Color the Peplos Kore". Visitors can use the brush and colors of their choice, color the statue of Peplos Kore and finally print and save their work as many times as they wish and in several variations.

Delphi,Greece
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1. Re: "Archaic Colors" at the Acropolis museum

Very interesting aldro10 : )

I had to bump this up again !

Athens, Greece
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2. Re: "Archaic Colors" at the Acropolis museum

This is brilliant, Aldro! - but I hadn't heard about it till now. I knew something about the colours - I used to teach Latin and Ancient Greek in London - but it was difficult to convince my students. Sounds like a great experience for children AND adults - thank you so much!

Athens, Greece
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3. Re: "Archaic Colors" at the Acropolis museum

Thank you Mariha2912 & Nikoletta G for the comments :-)

Athens, Greece
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4. Re: "Archaic Colors" at the Acropolis museum

bump

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5. Re: "Archaic Colors" at the Acropolis museum

Sounds fascinating. Certainly the Acropolis museum statues provide the best evidence anywhere of paint on ancient statues. The fact that so many were buried in caches has preserved this feature to a degree unparalleled elsewhere, and gives some idea of how ancient statues would really have looked

London, United...
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6. Re: "Archaic Colors" at the Acropolis museum

I once had the delightful experience in the museum of watching a class of 5-6 year-olds dress one of their number as the Peplos Kore. The teacher had collected and brought all the necessary clothes and embellishments, and the other children went up to the little girl who was playing the kore and took their turns dressing her. When the job was finished she stood there proudly and very beautifully alongside the statue, and everyone applauded her. It was absolutely lovely.

Edited: 09 March 2013, 23:08
Toronto, Canada
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7. Re: "Archaic Colors" at the Acropolis museum

There is a good little book about this at the museum bookstore. I enjoyed reading it once I got home.

Athens, Greece
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8. Re: "Archaic Colors" at the Acropolis museum

bump

9. Re: "Archaic Colors" at the Acropolis museum

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