He who controls the present, controls the past. He who controls the past, controls the future. ~ George Orwell.
The museum, an institution to preserve and interpret the material evidence of the human race, has a long history, springing from an innate human desire to collect and interpret the world around us. By deciding how the past is presented and memorialized, museums not only preserve the past, they also play an important role in the construction of our ideologies, identities and our self-awareness. Egypt’s identity is richly interwoven and defined by its history, a history that has long been celebrated around the world. The open-air museums of ancient Egypt promoted the world’s first package holidays, drawing visitors to celebrate and interpret the country’s complex history. Today, hundreds of museums in Egypt preserve and exhibit the past for tourists and Egyptians alike. The grandiose style of Egyptian museums both reflects and magnifies the glorification of Egypt’s bygone eras. This series focuses on the museums of Egypt and the different styles of presenting the past to audiences. Using space, materials and design, curators can venerate events, revere heroes, and imbue history with a sense of grandiosity. Through the aesthetics of the displays, museums and their curators help the public understand history, but more importantly, to reveal and mould Egypt’s identity.
2011 Newman Prize Winner
The Primary media sponsor of this exhibition is Maine Home + Design