Arts | Exhibition: Works of Michelangelo, da Vinci, Raphael arrive

joint exhibition presented by the Macao Museum of Art (MAM) and the British Museum bringing the original drawings of 42 Renaissance artists to Macau was officially opened last night at a ceremony held at MAM.

Presenting works from renowned figures including Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo and Raphael, the exhibition seeks to highlight the achievements of Italian art during this period. According to organizers, some 52 drawings will be on display by 42 artists from the Renaissance period in the 15th and 16th centuries.

The touring works of art come from the British Museum, which regularly loans pieces from its collection to other museums around the world.

“Last year we lent 4,700 objects because we’re passionate about sharing the collection as much as we can,” said Sarah Vowles, the British Museum curator of this exhibition, who attended yesterday’s official opening.

This is remarkable, she said, because many of the objects – including the drawings on display at MAM – “are so precious that we can’t expose them to the light very often.”

The exhibition is divided into six sections: “The Human Figure,” “Movement,” “Light,” “Costume and Drapery,” “The Natural World” and “Storytelling.” The sections combine to examine some of the themes that characterize Renaissance art.

The exhibition also acts as the debuting program of a series of exhibitions celebrating the 20th anniversary of both MAM and the establishment of the Macau SAR.

Margarida Saraiva, the local curator of this particular exhibition, said that she has always wanted to collaborate with the British Museum. Yesterday she said she was pleased to “finally have the chance to bring this desire into reality.”

The University of Saint Joseph’s Creative Industries Faculty has also had a role in bringing this exhibition to reality. Both Saraiva and Prof. Gerald Estadieu of the University are fond of presenting such art to the visually challenged.

A rendering of the drawings made by a 3D printer will allow the visually challenged to have a sense of the artworks by touching them.

As Saraiva explained, “we had the desire to explore other senses beyond vision. So we were in touch with the university, which has been working with 3D printing.”

Moreover, the museum has reserved a wall for visitors to show their own drawing talent, because “the first drawing in history of humanity was made on a stone wall.”

Yesterday’s ceremony was attended by senior government officials, including Secretary for Social Affairs and Culture Alexis Tam, President of the Cultural Affairs Bureau Mok Ian Ian, and Macao Government Tourism Office chief Helena de Senna Fernandes.

The exhibition will run until the end of June. Admission is free-of-charge. Staff reporters

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