Mummy: Secrets of the Tomb
Nov 19, 2011 – Mar 11, 2012NewMarket, Center, and Altria galleries
Featuring more than 100 objects from the internationally renowned Egyptian collection of the British Museum, Mummy: Secrets of the Tomb explores the rituals of death and burial in ancient Egypt and uncovers mysteries that have shrouded mummies for millennia.
There are few civilizations that have aroused as much interest and intrigue as that of Ancient Egypt. With its distinctive artistic heritage and vast monumental remains, Egypt has held a continuing fascination for outsiders throughout time. And perhaps nothing has piqued people’s interest more than its funerary beliefs and practices.
In this riveting exhibition, we focus on the life and death of Nesperennub, a temple priest who lived 3,000 years ago. The exhibition opens with a 3-D film*, narrated by Patrick Stewart, which shows the virtual unwrapping of Nesperennub’s mummy using the most advanced scanning technology currently available. Peering beneath the linen wrapping, visitors will see how this temple priest may have looked and lived. These vivid details provide insight into the process of mummification as well as life expectancy, health, and disease in ancient Egypt.
In addition to Nesperennub’s mummy and coffin, visitors will view more than 100 objects related to Egyptian society and its funerary rituals, as well as learn the importance of these objects in ensuring eternal life. Some of the objects in the exhibition include additional human and animal mummies; a gilded mask; Egyptian jewelry; canopic jars used for preserving the liver, lungs, stomach, and intestines of the deceased; massive sarcophagi lids; statuary; and tomb lintels.
*Mummy: Secrets of the Tomb is complemented by a 21-minute, realistic 3-D movie shown prior to the exhibition. After 2,800 years, technology has unlocked much information about the mummy of Egyptian priest Nesperennub, including age, family, health, mummification practices, and ritual elements. The content is recommended for visitors age seven to adult.
Mummy of a priest
Calcite Egyptian-style statue of Ptolemy II
Mummy of a cat
Wooden face of a coffin
Inner-coffin of Seni
Statue of Menkheperraseneb
Black granite seated statue of Menkheperraseneb
Stela of Qeh
Round-topped stela of Qeh
Amulet in the shape of an ankh
Sarcophagus of Pakap
Sarcophagus lid of Pakap
Member Preview: Mummy: Secrets of the Tomb (Thu, Nov 17, 1 - 9 pm & Fri, Nov 18, 10 am - 9 pm)
Talk: Mummification: Resurrection of an Ancient Art (Dec 1, 6:30 pm)
Gallery Talk: 3 in 30: Egyptomania (Dec 6 & 8)
Film: Cinema Style: Cleopatra (Sat, Dec 10, 10:30 - 5 pm)
After School Art Club: Egypt's Treasures (Thu, Jan 12, 4:30 - 6:30 pm)
Class: The Riddle of the Rosetta Stone (Thu, Jan 12, 19, 1 - 2:30 pm (sold out) & Thu, Jan 12, 19, 6:00 - 7:30 pm)
VMFA Book Club: Cleopatra: A Life (Thu, Jan 19, 5:30 - 7 pm)
Friday Family Art Nights: Egyptian Jewelry (Fri, Jan 27, 5 -7 pm)
Young @ Art: Ancient Art and Languages (Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Thursdays in January, 10 - 11 am)
Class: Film 101: Illusion and Spectacle: Hollywood’s Egypt and Mummies (Mondays, Feb 6 - Mar 5, 1 - 4 pm)
Talk & Tasting: Uncorking The Past: Ancient Ales, Wines, and Extreme Beverages (Fri, Feb 10, 6:30 - 8 pm)
Music: Ancient Egyptian Percussion (Thu, Feb 23, 6:30 - 7:30 pm)