A RARE exhibition, never before seen in the southern hemisphere, will be exclusively featured at the Bendigo Art Gallery next year.
One hundred historic pieces featured in The Body Beautiful in Ancient Greece exhibition at the internationally-renowned British Museum will arrive in Bendigo in August 2014.
The exhibition offers a diverse selection of key artworks from the British Museum’s Greek and Roman collection ranging from free-standing marble sculptures including the famous Discobolus.
Victorian premier Denis Napthine said the exhibition was a coup for Bendigo. “This is a fantastic and unique opportunity not only for Bendigo but the whole of Victoria and Australia,” he said.
“The Bendigo Art Gallery has got a great track record with the Grace Kelly exhibition and the White Wedding Dress exhibition.
“I think it will be another blockbuster.
“It will be great for the gallery and great for the economy.”
Dr Napthine said it took two years of negotiations and planning to get the exhibition to Bendigo.
“I have seen some of the things that are coming and they are just iconic,” he said.
“Discobolus is one of the best known statues in the world and to have it in Bendigo is just unbelievable.”
VIDEO: Peter Weaving. Images: © The Trustees of the British Museum
Bendigo Art Gallery director Karen Quinlan said The Body Beautiful in Ancient Greece exhibition was significant.
“We are fortunate to have it Bendigo,” she said.
“It is a wonderful overview of what was happening 2000 years ago in the eyes of a Greek mind.”
Ms Quinlan said a key component of the exhibition was the human body.
“Some of the themes in the exhibition look at sexuality, love, marriage and gender,” she said.
“It is a celebration of the human body, male and female.
“They are very contemporary themes.
“I think people will be able to relate to the exhibition in many ways.”
Ms Quinlan said she couldn’t wait for Bendigonians and visitors to marvel in the 2000 year old pieces.
“It is exciting because we have an art institute that will be developed in Bendigo with La Trobe University,” she said.
“I am excited for the students because this is an opportunity on their doorstep to see sculptures that were made so beautifully.
“They will be able to come in and sketch from the form.”
Ms Quinlan said The Body Beautiful in Ancient Greece will be exhibited at the gallery in August 2014.