Things With Wings: Mythological Figures in Ancient Greek Art
October 12, 2005–November 26, 2006
This small exhibition explores the various winged gods and hybrid creatures in ancient Greek art. The Greeks conceived of messenger gods like Hermes and Iris as winged, so they could go anywhere and swiftly deliver their messages to gods and mortals alike. In the medieval world, angels became the winged intermediaries between God and humans. Personifications of abstract concepts, such as Love (Eros), Victory (Nike), Sleep (Hypnos) and Death (Thanatos), could also appear as winged humans. The wings of monsters like griffins, sirens and sphinxes enhanced their terrifying appearance but also protected the beings they guarded. The installation presents 31 objects, which include Greek bronze and marble statuettes, vases and gems.