FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE JULY 16, 2015 MEDIA CONTACTS: Amanda Hicks (312) 443-7297 [email protected] Nina Litoff (312) 443-3363 [email protected] JAHARIS GALLERIES TO FEATURE INNOVATIVE EXHIBITION OF ANCIENT SCULPTURE AND RENAISSANCE AND BAROQUE PRINTS IN DIONYSOS UNMASKED An Exploration of 2,000 Years of Creative Expression Inspired by Dionysos Offers New Insights into the Art of Classical Antiquity and its Revivals CHICAGO—The Art Institute announces an innovative collaboration between the Department of Ancient and Byzantine Art and the Department of Prints and Drawings to explore Renaissance and Baroque printmakers’ direct responses to Classical antiquity through the figure of Dionysos, the ancient Greek god of wine and theater. Dionysos Unmasked, on view from July 31, 2015 to February 15, 2016, in the Mary and Michael Jaharis Galleries of Greek, Roman, and Byzantine Art, juxtaposes ancient sculpture with prints from the 15th through the 18th century with nearly 100 objects— pieces from the permanent collection, new loans of ancient art, and recently acquired works on paper. Dionysos—known as Bacchus to the Romans—famously cavorted his way through the timeless tales of Greek and Roman mythology with an entourage of satyrs, the god Pan, and wild maenads who personified the untamed and self-indulgent desires of humanity unleashed by the intoxicating powers of wine. Also known and celebrated in early Greek festivals as the patron god of theater, an aspect of the deity less well known today, Dionysos could take many forms, from a graceful youth to a bearded mature man. During the Renaissance and Baroque periods, the time of early printmaking, an interest in antiquity—especially Dionysos—flourished. Ancient sculptures depicting the god and his raucous retinue inspired artists to find new ways to transform age-old Dionysian subjects into prints and drawings that would appeal to their own contemporary audiences. Greek and Roman sculptures depicting Dionysos and his wild followers, and vessels used in ritual drinking parties and festivals honoring the god anchor this exhibition. Their featured printed counterparts include masterpieces from the Italian Renaissance to the French Rococo, including notably Andrea Mantegna’s Bacchanal with a Wine Vat, a 15th-century Italian engraving with striking visual similarity to the bronze Statue of Young Dionysos (a current long-term loan to the museum). Bringing together an extraordinarily rich selection of works, spanning as many as 2,000 years, this exhibition offers visitors unique insight into the art of Classical antiquity and its later revivals. RELATED EVENTS Gallery Talk: Exhibition Overview of Dionysos Unmasked: Ancient Sculpture and Early Prints August 4, 2015 12:00pm–1:00pm Meet in Griffin Court Free with museum admission. Images: Left: Andrea Mantegna. Bacchanal with a Wine Vat (detail), c. 1470. Bequest of Mrs. Potter Palmer, Jr. Right: Statue of Young Dionysos (detail), 100 B.C.–A.D. 100. Anonymous loan. Sponsors: Support for this exhibition is generously provided by Shawn M. Donnelley and Christopher M. Kelly and the Jaharis Family Foundation, Inc. # # # www.artic.edu Twitter Facebook MUSEUM HOURS Daily: 10:30–5:00 Thursdays until 8:00 Closed Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's days Children under 14 always free Members always free The Art Institute of Chicago gratefully acknowledges the support of the Chicago Park District on behalf of the citizens of Chicago.