The Getty Villa is undoubtedly excited to launch a new exhibition called the Sanctuaries of Demeter and Persephone at Morgantina, which features 37 excavated objects from the ancient central Sicilian city.
The artifacts will be on display until January 21st of next year, on loan from the Museo Archeologico Regionale of Aidone. They include vases, oil lamps, terracotta deity figurines, bone clothes and hair pins, and a lead curse tablet.
Demeter and Persephone were worshipped as goddesses of agricultural fertility in ancient Sicily. Myth holds that Persephone was kidnapped by Hades, thus creating the change of seasons. In Roman history, Demeter is known as Ceres, and Roman images are featured in the exhibit as well, to showcase the divinities in both cultures.
“We are thrilled to have these unique objects from Morgantina- an excavation where generations of American archeologists were trained-on view for the first time in the United States at the Getty Museum,” said senior curator of antiquities Claire Lyons. “These loans represent the great benefits of collaboration, and help to share and preserve Sicily’s rich cultural heritage for future generations.”
Parco Archeologico di Morgantina director Enrico Caruso added, “With this special exhibition, we are very much excited to launch a new era of close collaboration between the Museum of Aidone, today part of the Archeological Park of Morgantina, an ancillary institute of the Sicilian Ministry of Culture and Sicilian Identity, and the J. Paul Getty Museum. Thanks to this initiative, our reciprocal relationship will emerge strengthened and will be continually renewed in future projects, for fruitful academic and especially cultural exchanges.”