It's one of the world's great iconic structures, a cultural symbol as well as an artifact and a living presence in one of the world's great metropolises. Even from a distance, the Parthenon inspires, compels and provokes as it connects past to present. All this and more awaits at an upcoming international symposium at UGA on the restoration of the great structure:
"Rethinking the Parthenon: Color, Materiality and Aesthetics" Oct. 17-18.
The international symposium will bring scholars to UGA to present recent research on the Parthenon, a temple built for the goddess Athena on the Acropolis of Athens between 447 and 432 B.C.
The symposium will focus on three interrelated aspects of the Parthenon: its color, its materiality and its aesthetics. New interdisciplinary research in London and on the Acropolis in Athens has uncovered remains of ancient painting on the sculptures and architecture of the Parthenon. These discoveries add new insights to old discussions of the building's decoration. The diversity of the Parthenon's construction materials, including white marble, bronze, ivory, gold and pigments are of critical importance, the complex symbolism and material aesthetics of the religious use of these materials.
Robin Osborne, a professor of ancient history at Cambridge University, will deliver the keynote speech, "The Parthenon as a Work of Art," Oct. 17 at 5:30 p.m. in the M. Smith Griffith Auditorium at the Georgia Museum of Art following a 5 p.m. reception.
The stories codified in Greek architecture are myriad and it's no surprise that more have been uncovered in the restoration at the Acropolis. Classical culture is alive in so many ways; come out and be a part of what are sure be fascinating discussions.
Image: the Parthenon, courtesy of the Acroplis Restoration Service.