Saturday, April 26, 2008

Egypt's sunken treasure moors in Madrid

Al Ahram Weekly (Nevine El-Aref)

Egypt's ambassador to Spain, Yasser Murad, said that over the summer Matadero Madrid would be the setting of the Spanish stop of the "Egypt's Sunken Treasures" touring exhibition, which displays 489 remarkable artefacts excavated from beneath the Mediterranean coast of Egypt. The exhibition has already seen spectacular success in Germany and France with more than 1.5 million visitors.

"From 16 April to 28 September, the Spanish people can take a virtual dive to the bottom of the Mediterranean Sea and explore the lost treasures of ancient Egypt," Murad said, adding that the Matador centre was the most suitable place in Madrid to host such an exhibition since the height of its galleries meant they could house the three towering, red granite colossi of a Ptolemaic king and queen and the Nile deity, Hapi, each of which is five metres tall.

"The aura of the Mediterranean Sea is everywhere apparent," Murad told Al-Ahram Weekly. The ancient towns which lie submerged under the sea are resurrected in the Matadero. With waves echoing on the audio system and the sparkling black floor reflecting the seabed, audio-visual technology and visual effects are used to invoke the ambiance from which the antiquities were retrieved and the stages of the underwater excavation. "Visitors are taken on an imaginary voyage through time and space back to the Ptolemaic, Byzantine, Coptic and early Islamic eras, when those cities were the main commercial centres of Egypt," Murad pointed out.

See the above page for the full story.

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