Historic Images of the Greek Bronze Age The Reproductions of E. Gilliéron & Son
The Metropolitan Museum of Art, May 17, 2011–June 17, 2012
The exhibition focuses on the work of Swiss-born Emile Gilliéron (1850–1924) and his son, Emile (1885–1939), who were among the foremost art restorers of their time. Gilliéron père worked alongside Schliemann, and both he and his son would later spend a large part of their careers assisting Evans at Knossos, where they witnessed firsthand the discovery of tantalizingly fragmentary wall paintings of exquisite quality and helped realize Evans’s vision of their original appearance. The Gilliérons also established a thriving business that catered to the popular demand for reproductions of antiquities from the newly identified Minoan and Mycenaean civilizations. Their work influenced the study of Aegean art and was integral to its widespread introduction throughout Europe and North America, where the art of prehistoric Greece would inspire a generation of writers, intellectuals, and artists, from James Joyce and Sigmund Freud to Pablo Picasso and Giorgio de Chirico, who studied drawing under the elder Gilliéron.