Thursday, April 29, 2010

Pictures Via Generous Neighbor - Egyptian Art in Berlin

Harpboy made a perfectly good suggestion about using my hosts wifi connection directly to my computer, but it is a very old machine and I was afraid of messing it up for her and decided new disciplines are often mentally healthy.  But due to a generous neighbor who hasn't put a password on his wifi, I can give you some pictures.  (I'm sitting in the backyard again and fortunately, there is a plastic overhang because the neighbor is having his tile roof redone and bits and pieces are coming down.)

Museum Insel (Island) is four or five museums on an island of the Spree River in the middle of central Berlin, in what was East Berlin.  I didn't do my homework well enough, nor does my faulty brain remember all I was told, but some of the museums or parts of all of them were badly damaged during WWII.  These are the columns as you walk to the Neues (New) Museum.  It's new in the sense that it has been newly reconstructed and the old collections newly reunited.  It covers prehistory and then Egyptian and Greek works particularly.

As we walked along the columns I took this picture of the what I think is the Altes (old) Museum that has paintings and sculptures from more modern times.

We wanted to see, given the short time we had - we bought combined tickets that let you into all the museums for 14 Euros ($18) - the Egyptian exhibit and the building itself with its combination of the old original building and Chipperfield's design for the old parts.  So that's what you mostly get to see here.  No, I don't know what it says.

This statute was about 12 feet tall.  It's King Amenemhat III.

This is the Family Group Ptahmai.  Father, wife, and two daughters.
It was labeled 1840-1800 BC.  When I see things like this I am reminded that our modern inclination to believe that we are smarter and more developed than the people of the past is ridiculous.  While we do know what has happened in terms of what our culture says is history since then, as individuals we live lives with the same abilities to think, to create, to worry about how we look, about whether we have enough money, etc.  These people in the statue and the artist who created the statue could probably show up in Berlin and after the initial shocks of time travel, would probably fit in and understand our world. 

The Nefertiti bust - my key interest in this museum - is in the room at the end of this one.  Photos were not allowed.  But someone on Flicker has posted some and others of this museum that are much better than mine.  So you can see a lot more.

This Greek God, who I think was found in Egypt, stands at the other end of the hall and can see Nefertiti.

But this robed Goddess - like the God, about 12 feet tall - is standing next to him and probably does not approve of his view.

I thought this jewelery looked like things people do today.  It said 7th Century.

These are some mummy masks.  I thought this face and hair could be walking the streets of Berlin and not many would notice that she wasn't from now.

OK, enough for now.  I'll try to get some more up, but we want to go see some more things on our last day before heading for London.

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