Heracles to Alexander the Great – Treasures from the Royal Capital of Macedon
7th April 2011 to 29th August 2011
An Hellenic Kingdom in the Age of Democracy In the first major archaeological exhibition to be shown in the new temporary exhibition galleries, the Ashmolean Museum will showcase new discoveries from the royal tombs of Aegae, the ancient capital of Macedon. Over five hundred extraordinary objects will come to Oxford from Vergina, northern Greece, the vast majority of which will go on display for the first time anywhere in the world. They tell the story of the kings and queens of Macedon, the rise of the Temenids – descendents of Heracles, and the ruling dynasty of Alexander the Great.
Images and the State: Graphics In China in the 1960s and '70s
8th March 2011 to 3rd July 2011
Visual imagery in China during the Cultural Revolution was limited to officially sanctioned subject matter and styles. Simple graphics and bold colour prevailed in designs that were often accompanied by political slogans. Images of Mao Zedong were ubiquitous. From posters, papercuts and matchboxes, this 2 part display of recent acquisitions demonstrates how images in the 1960s and ‘70s appeared consistently across the media, drawing on ancient popular motifs and how surprisingly, they were executed by artists better known for subtler ink paintings in the traditional manner.
October 2011 – January 2012
Known as the father of European landscape painting, Claude Lorrain’s influence has been enormous, not only on the art of his immediate followers but on European landscape painters throughout the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. Described by Constable as "the most perfect landscape painter the world ever saw", the impact of his art has been felt particularly in Britain where eighteenth- and early nineteenth-century artists, collectors and connoisseurs contributed to a cult of Claude which has left a lasting effect on British attitudes to the countryside.
This exhibition is designed to show that he was not as conventional a painter as he has often seemed but a peculiar and eccentric artist whose approach to painting, print-making and drawing was the result of a highly personal working method. The core of this exhibition will be made from works in the Ashmolean, reunited with loans from collections in England, France and Germany, each of which has been chosen not only for its interest to the theme but because each is also a masterpiece in its own right. This exhibition will cast light on the artistic process and cast fresh light on one of the most enchanting of European masters.