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Captivating mythology

If you are a history buff with a passion for ancient civilisations, or an eclectic art lover, or a fashion designer, the Egyptian art exhibition at Focus Art Gallery, Alwarpet, is the place for you.

DO YOUR dreams take flight on paths less travelled, say on a barge down the Nile to experience the exquisite paintings on the ancient walls of the Pharaohs' burial chambers? Or are you a history buff with a passion for ancient civilisations, scripts and hieroglyphics? Or perhaps you are an eclectic art lover and would like to see Egyptian gods and goddesses on your walls, maybe even a fashion designer who could use the savvy striped headgear girdle worn by the ancient Pharaohs.

Well, if you are any of the above and can't afford that barge ride down the Nile, the next best thing would be a trip to the Focus Art Gallery, (TTK Road, Alwarpet) to an exhibition-cum-sale of reproductions on papyrus of Egyptian art circa 3000 BC-700 AD.

The reproductions have been done with a deft touch by local Egyptian artists and feature themes from paintings done on the burial chamber walls in the temples of Luxor and Karnac and the Valley of the Kings and Queens.

Bright colour touches of gold and copper and a sure touch of line and curve bring to life the gods and goddesses of ancient Egypt, the myth and the might of the great Pharaohs in typical costumes, and scenes from everyday Egyptian life of a civilisation which grew when the grass lands of the Sahara began drying, pushing people to the fertile valley of the Nile.

The flatness of the paintings and the delicate delineation of the objects as well as the jewel like colours are somewhat reminiscent of the later Persian miniatures. The richness of the mythology and the intimacy of everyday life as depicted in the paintings are captivating.

Amidst gods such as Horus, Napthys and the goddess Isis, stand the Pharaohs, making their offerings, or common folk playing with dogs, riding a horse etc. There are reproductions of exquisitely written hieroglyphics full of pretty birds and a fascinating script, and paintings of Pharaohs in typical headdress. The tree of life theme with golden fruit and the most dazzling coloured birds seem to go back 4000 years or more and make for a stunning reproduction. All the paintings have been done on different sized papyrus, with the maximum size being 4 feet by 3 feet. Many of these have been artistically framed by Focus.

The exhibition of Classical Egyptian Papyrus Paintings will be on till stocks last.

PUSHPA CHARI

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