Ancient Greek and Chinese science and technology on display in Athens and Beijing

Ancient Greek and Chinese science and technology on display in Athens and Beijing

An exchange of exhibitions between the Athens Herakleidon Museum and the China Museum of Science and Technology in Beijing will take place in the context of the Greece-China Year of Cultural Exchanges and Cooperation in Creative Industries 2017.

The Herakleidon Museum will host the exhibition “Ancient Chinese Science and Technology” by the China Museum of Science and Technology (CMST)  in Beijing,  in its two buildings from September 2017 to April 2018, while from October 2017 to March 2018, the Herakleidon Museum will present in Beijing the exhibition “EUREKA - Science, Art and Technology of the Ancient Greeks”, in collaboration with the Society for the Study of Ancient Greek Technology (ΕΜΑΕΤ), under scientific supervision by Professor Emeritus of the National Technical University of Athens, President of EMAET, Theodosios P. Tasios.

The exhibition “Ancient Chinese Science and Technology” of the China Museum of Science and Technology in Beijing will introduce, for the first time, the Greek public to some of the remarkable technological achievements of the Chinese civilization, which cover a broad scientific spectrum, from astronomy and navigation to weaving techniques, papermaking, printing, seismography, etc.,  presented through models of a variety of inventions. Moreover, visitors will have the unique opportunity to watch demonstrations of ancient Chinese weaving techniques, traditional methods of papermaking and printing, and others.

The exhibition “EUREKA – Science, art and technology of the Ancient Greeks” will present, for the first time, at the CMST in Beijing the most representative of the ancient Greek technological accomplishments in areas such as shipbuilding, mechanical engineering, communications, building, the arts, through original models and visual material. Significant among the exhibits will be the operational reproduction of the Antikythera Mechanism, thrice the size of the original, made of plexiglas, bronze and aluminum, which will be constructed for the Herakleidon Museum, in collaboration with the research team of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki and the scientific supervision of professors Dr Kyriakos Efstathios and Dr John Seiradakis. In addition, the exhibition will include two reproductions of historical ancient Greek shipwrecks, courtesy of the Museum of Navigation and Marine Arts of the Aegean and the Municipality of Samos.

The initiative is supported by the Institute of Electronic Structure and Laser - Foundation for Research and Technology- Hellas (IESL-FORTH) as part of its collaboration with the Palace Museum in Beijing and the establishment of a common research laboratory NIKI: China-Greece Laser Technology Joint Laboratory on Cultural Heritage, which aims at introducing the innovative laser technologies developed by IESL for the study and preservation of cultural heritage objects to the Palace Museum.

The exchange of the two exhibitions aims to strengthen the ties between the two nations through the mutual discovery and showcasing of the important cultural heritage of each. It is under the auspices of the Ministry of Education, Research and Religion/Department of Research and Innovation, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the Ministry of Culture and Sports and the Greek-Chinese Chamber.