Theater and Performance
Wine, Poets, and Performers in Ancient Greece
This gallery is closed in anticipation of an ambitious and exciting transformation of the George D. and Margo Behrakis Wing for Art of the Ancient World. Scheduled to open in Spring 2021, four galleries on Level 2 of the Wing will provide visitors with a grand entry to the MFA’s renowned collection of Greek, Roman, and Byzantine art—one of the finest and most comprehensive in the world. Many of the featured works are among the oldest in the collection, yet they will tell new stories, reflecting our time through the art of the past. With innovative new displays, visitors of all ages can understand the legacy of an ancient way of life and how it resonates today.
This gallery features objects related to Greek theater, including masks, dancing figures and musical instruments. Athenian plays were performed in the large, stone theaters of Greece, South Italy, and Sicily. Many of the MFA’s notable collection of fifth- and fourth-century BC vases feature scenes from dramas and comedies written by Greek playwrights. A “Looking Closer” iPad will enable visitors to delve deeper into the complex imagery presented on a gigantic South Italian mixing bowl (krater), which features the death of Thersites and was likely inspired by a lost Greek play.