Alexandria: Past Futures -II-

Marseille, MUCEM

08.02.2023 - 08.05.2023

Alexandria: Past Futures, an exhibition of nearly 200 artefacts from major European museum collections and displaying seven teen contemporary art works woven into historical works, highlights one of the greatest cities of the ancient Mediterranean at the peak of its cultural influence.

After having been shown in BOZAR, Brussels, the exhibition traveled to MUCEM, Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations in Marseille. The design concept is based upon the re-use of the exiting scenography of previous exhibitions. The existing scenography installed in the open- floor plan of MUCEM's exhibition hall is adapted to the curatorial themes of the show, by treating the already twice adapted exhibition design as an archeological site like the city of Alexandria partially is. Removable walls without vitrines were taken away, three new, straight walls were placed in the hall. Existing vitrines house artefacts or are turned into light- boxes for reproductions. Pedestals and free standing vitrines made for the exhibition in BOZAR were brought to MUCEM and scattered between the display elements on site, corresponding to the contemporary additions to the city. The displays are rendered with the softened blue of the sea, green of the vegetation and yellow of the sand, referring to a dreamy quote about the city, written by Lawrence Durrel in Alexandria Quartet (1957-1960). This colour concept repeated the aesthetic of BOZAR, connecting both exhibitions in entirely different interiors in Brussels and Marseille to each other.

Client: MUCEM, Museum of European and Mediterranean Civilisations
Location: MUCEM, Marseille / FR
Curatorial team: Arnaud Quertinmont and Nicolas Amoroso for the historical part, Edwin Nassr and Sarah Rifky for the contemporary art works
MUCEM project team: Laetitia Olivier, Flavie Jauffret-Colleter, Enguerrand Lascols
Execution: MUCEM led by Valerie Decombas & BAREM
Lighting: Benoit Deseille
Graphic design: Sara De Bondt
Art handling: MUCEM
Assistant: Maxime Descheemaecker
Photography: MUCEM © François Deladerrière

The exhibition is a co-production with BOZAR, Brussels.