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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

King Tut exhibit features artifacts

By John Garces/entertainment editor

Fans of ancient Egyptian culture or the world of pharaohs can experience a little piece of history at the Dallas Museum of Art.

The museum is one of only four in the country to present Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs, an exhibit dedicated to the boy king who ruled ancient Egypt as well as the other ruling figures of the golden age of the Egyptian dynasty. It runs through May 15.

According to kingtut.org, the exhibit focuses on the 100-year period known as the 18th Dynasty, when Egyptian artistry was at its peak and the power held by the empire was at its highest.

The exhibit showcases more than 130 artifacts recovered directly from King Tut’s tomb, including 50 specially designed burial items made solely for inclusion in the king’s tomb.

Beginning with a short video narrated by Omar Sharif, the exhibit consists of 11 different galleries, each representing a different area of Egyptian history.

The galleries explore a wide range of topics, including ancient Egypt before Tut, and features many artifacts from his relatives, many his heirlooms.

Other exhibits delve into traditional and religious beliefs of the ancient Egyptians with one room devoted entirely to the Egyptian concept of death, burial and the afterlife.

In this gallery, the funerary items prepared specifically for placement in a pharaoh’s tomb after burial can be found. In some cases, the actual tombs are on display.

After a small gallery devoted to the religious beliefs of the period, including those of Tut’s father, believed to be the “heretic” pharaoh Akhenaten, the remaining galleries are devoted to Tut, nicknamed the boy king because of his ascension to the throne at the age of 9. A new gallery explores recent forensic studies done on the exhumed body of the king in an attempt to find out what killed him at the early age of 18.

The exhibit came about through the efforts of Howard Carter, who discovered the top step of a staircase that eventually led to Tut’s tomb, hidden behind 11 steps and a sealed door.

Since the discovery Nov. 4, 1922, the public’s fascination with King Tut and the ancient Egyptian way of life in general has led to many exhibits dedicated to the time.

The first American exhibit dedicated to King Tut, Treasures of Tutankhamun, visited six U.S. cities from 1976-1979.

Because of minor damage to some artifacts on display during the previous tour, the Egyptian parliament barred the traveling of its artifacts onto foreign soil. It would be three decades before the government would allow another exhibit to travel.

In 2004, the Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities began working with National Geographic, AEG Exhibitions and Arts and Exhibitions International to create a new touring exhibition.

Unlike the previous exhibit, which focused on the discovery of the tomb, Tutankhamun and the Golden Age of the Pharaohs placed Tut in his own time by featuring the artistry and artifacts of the time period, shedding light on his and his family’s roles in shaping the Egyptian empire.

Tickets are $16.50 for children ages 6-17, $27.50 for adults, and $24.50 for students with an ID and senior citizens. For $5 extra, one can purchase a golden ticket, which includes the viewing of a 3-D movie that gives a brief history on some of the findings.

The exhibit runs 9 a.m.-9 p.m. every day. More information can be found at dallasmuseumofart.org. Tickets are available through Ticketmaster at ticketmaster.com and at the Museum box office.

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