Archive for October, 2016

Crustumerium: Death and afterlife at the gates of Rome.

Crustumerium: Death and afterlife at the gates of Rome.

Exhibition: 19  May – 20 Nov 2016 at the Glypotek, Copenhagen
The ancient city of Crustumerium was a centre for cultural exchange and played a significant role in the early history of Rome. For some 2,500 years Crustumerium was merely a recurrent reference in historical sources.  When in 1975 archaeologists located the city, some 15 km north-east of the Italian capital, it was an archaeological breakthrough of the first order. Since then Crustumerium has been the object of numerous successful excavations.

Admission to special exhibitions all days, including Tuesday.
Admission includes access to all special exhibitions and the rest of the museum.
Adults: 110 DKK
Groups of 10 or more: 90 DKK
Under 27: 65 DKK
Under 18: Free

The exhibition is accompanied by a comprehensive catalogue featuring contributions by thirty-two leading experts within the field.
Buy the catalogue

Straight from the tomb
Realised in close cooperation with on-site archaeologists from the University of Groningen, the Netherlands, and the Soprintendenza Speciale per il Colosseo e l’Area Archeologica Centrale, Rome, Italy, the exhibition presents significant recently excavated grave goods from Crustumerium. A total of ten tombs will be exhibited at the Glyptotek, featuring skeletal remains and spectacular treasures. Each individual tomb offers an intimate narrative that evoke human life and fate from a bygone era, making tombs much more than just relics from a distant past.

Death and the afterlife
The exhibition focuses on ideas about life and death in antiquity. The many objects testify to the customs, mindsets and beliefs found in a culturally hybrid society. As such, the exhibition shows how various cultural impulses from antiquity have affected humanity’s ideas about death and afterlife, and how such ideas continue to affect and offer perspectives on our present time.

Live archaeology at the Glyptotek …
Last but not least, the exhibition offers rare first-hand insight into the processes that take objects from being archaeological finds to becoming exhibition artefacts. An archaeological laboratory allows visitors to witness restorers work on microexcavation of block lifts been removed as single, undisturbed pieces from a tomb complex in Crustumerium and transported to Copenhagen for this occasion. In addition to witnessing the actual excavation work, visitors can also see and ask the experts about how archaeological finds are treated, preserved, analysed and interpreted.

… and live from Crustumerium
The excavation work currently undertaken at the city of Crustumerium itself will also be broadcast to Copenhagen. On selected days throughout the summer, the exhibition will facilitate live streaming featuring archaeologists at work in Italy, presenting their most recent discoveries to Copenhagen exhibition visitors.

The exhibition is supported by:
Aage og Johanne Louis-Hansens Fond 

The archaeological laboratory is supported by:

Paul Klee’s hand puppets

Paul Klee’s hand puppets

Felix Klee woke up on his ninth birthday to find eight strange little figures waving at him.

They were hand puppets  made by  his father, the artist Paul Klee who had   based them on stock characters from Kasperl and Gretl (Germany’s Punch and Judy). For the heads, he used whatever he could turn to use from the household’s everyday life: beef bones and electrical outlets, bristle brushes, leftover bits of fur and nutshells. Next he began to sew costumes.  Between 1916 and 1925 Klee (1879-1940) made some fifty hand puppets for Felix, of which thirty are still in existence. 



Felix Klee the puppeteer

Finally, Klee painted an old picture frame to serve as the curtained proscenium of a theatre. It fitted into a doorway, on one side of which were the puppeteer and puppets and on the other, the audience.

The cast included political figures, a self-portrait, and a skull-faced character which Felix called Dr. Death. When Felix grew up and went travelling he took many of his favourite puppets with him. Almost all of these were destroyed during the World War II bombing of Wurzburg.


The only survivor was Dr. Death. 

Gallery of Paul Klee’s puppets.
Book: Paul Klee’s Hand Puppets.