Among people with a professional interest in the arts, "Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs," which opens today at the M.H. de Young Memorial Museum, will merely deepen the tarnish on the reputation of the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco.
Although FAMSF curator Renee Dreyfus has swapped out four objects presented at other venues for four of her own choosing, the show in bulk comes here prepackaged by National Geographic and Arts and Exhibitions International, a subsidiary of corporate impresario AEG Worldwide, which also owns the San Francisco Examiner.
Critics have hammered every art museum that has hosted "Tutankhamun." (A parallel exhibition, "Tutankhamun, the Golden King and the Great Pharaohs" - same size, same sources, same organizers - opens today at the Children's Museum of Indianapolis.) But here, as elsewhere - except Dallas, where attendance fell about 40 percent short of projections - a vast audience probably will eat it up, even at $27.50 a head for general admission.
Therein lies a mystery to eclipse the unanswered questions represented by many of the objects on view.
See the above page for full details.