Best of 2019

In 2019, the legacy of Graeco-Roman Egypt was particularly pertinent (amongst other things).  A lot’s been going on this year. The highlights include:

1. Renee So Ancient and Modern

Renee So’s powerful installation at the De La Warr Pavilion impresses with its vision, its craft, the versatility of her vision and its humour.

2. Kate Daudy It wasn’t that at all

Daudy’s immersion intro Egyptology has created a profound and moving installation that explores the meaning making of life.

3. Between Oedipus and Freud

The Greek story of Oedipus was central to Freud’s conception of the unconscious drives, but the sphinx is an Egyptian creature which haunted him throughout his life. A revealing show.

4. Prehistory: a Modern Enigma

A fascinating show exploring how prehistory impacted on twentieth century art. Une révélation.

5. Blake et Mortimer

A fast paced adventure to solve a mystery linked to Akhenaten which might threaten the whole world. A french language comic whose heroes are two impeccable English gentleman.

6. The Denney Edition at Rainham Hall

Today the trend setters are looking to Deep East London: Rainham, Redchurch and Romford. Why? Partly this show. A truly gorgeous exhibition. A most handsome house.

7. Antinous: the boy done god

A small exhibition celebrating and exploring images of Antinous, Hadrian’s partner who was later deified.

8. Nefertiti’s face

A fasincating book that explores the history and legacy of a single object of immense value. This well written book analyses the various levels of meaning and positions the bust of Nefertiti within its various contexts.

9. I am Ashurbanipal

Brilliant use of lights to bring Assyrian art to life and explore the complex life of Ashurbanipal – a cultured connoisseur and ruthless warlord. Example piece: Ashuranipal relaxing in his garden with his wife. his enemies decapitated heads hung around from trees.

10. The Treasures of Strawberry Hill House

Horace Walpole was the first celebrity curator and his installation of Strawberry Hill House always included his collection which was broken up and sold at his death. This was the first chance to see some of his choicest pieces back at Strawberry.

11. Visualising impossible machines

A small show using Augmented Reality technology to recreate a perpetual motion designed by Leonardo, that would have been impossible in reality. An indication of where VR/AR in museums might take us in the future.

12. Tutankhamun Treasures of the Golden Pharaoh

He’s back. The original blockbuster exhibition. The Final Tour. Nuff said. A must see show.

Kate Daudy
Kate Daudy Remebering Ankhesenamurn Georgian Chair.