A people, generally believed to have originated in the East, shrouded in the mystery of an impenetrable language, the Etruscans were, before Rome, in the leading role among the Mediterranean’s great civilizations. Sailors and merchants, the Etruscans evolved in a context enriched through international trade and exchanges, notably with the Greeks, of whom they were both emulators and rivals.The exhibition organized by Musée Maillol explores, in an unprecedented way, the daily life of the Etruscans. It tells the extraordinary adventure of a people that developed between the ninth and the second centuries BCE, in an area that today corresponds to the Italian peninsula. The image of the Etruscans is too often told only through stories associated with its funerary world. The discovery of many graves, especially during the nineteenth century, greatly emphasized this fundamental component and constituted archaeologists’ primary source. Thus we have tended, incorrectly, to detach them from the world of the living. It is precisely the different aspects of daily life of this happy and peaceful civilization that will be highlighted in this exhibition, through the exploration of the great cities of this confederation*: Veii, Cerveteri, Tarquinia and Orvieto. Religion, writing, weapons, painting and sculpture, craftsmanship in gold and silver, bronze and ceramics will be on display. The development of knowledge of their environment, fundamental to our understanding, will also be expanded. We will see a very distinctive architecture, far from classical canons, adorned with large terracotta decorations, accented with extremely vivid colours. The exhibition will present 250 works from prestigious institutions in Italy and other European countries, under the patronage of the Ministero per i Beni e le Attività Culturali and with the participation of the Museo Nazionale Etrusco di Villa Giulia, Rome; Vatican Museums, Rome; Capitolini Museums, Rome; Museo Archeologico, Florence; British Museum, London; Bibliothèque Nationale de France, Paris; Martin von Wagner Museum, Würzburg; Staatliche Antikensammlungen and Glyptothek, Munich; Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek, Copenhage
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