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Exhibition at the Musée Guimet with Michael Falser

Oct 15, 2013

Michael Falser, project leader at the Cluster's Chair of Global Art History contributes to an exhibition on Angkor at the famous Musée Guimet in Paris, one of the leading museums of Asian art.

From October 15 onwards, the Musée Guimet presents the exhibition "Angkor: Naissance d’un mythe – Louis Delaporte et le Cambodge". Of great importance is the fact that the museum, for the first time in its history, exhibits not original artworks from Indochina, but these plaster cast copies from the famous temples of Angkor in Cambodia which were executed in various colonial plaster cast missions by the naval captain Louis Delaporte. These casts helped not only to popularize the art and architecture of Angkor for a European public within the Musée Indo-chinois in the Trocadero Palace in Paris (1880-1925), but also served as a kind of generic pool of decorative elements for the architectural reconstitutions which materialized Angkorian temple architectures in several French Universal and Colonial Exhibitions between 1889 and 1937.

Michael Falser's project D12 "Heritage as a Transcultural Concept - Angkor Vat from an Object of Colonial Archaeology to a Contemporary Global Icon" (2009-2012, ongoing) focuses primarily on this translation technique of plaster casting to visualize Angkor in French museum and exhibition spaces. The results of this research are now part of the exhibition catalogue of the Guimet exhibition, and will be part of his forthcoming book "Angkor Wat. From Jungle Find to Global Icon. A Transcultural History of Heritage at De Gruyter", Berlin (2014).

Dr.-Ing. Mag. Michael Falser is Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Chair of Global Art History and coordinator of research project D12 "Heritage as a Transcultural Concept". Among many other publications, he recently published some general remarks in the Cluster’s E-Journal "Transcultural Studies" and in the RIHA- Journal of the International Association of Research Institutes in the History of Art as a fellow of the Deutsche Forum Kunstgeschichte in Paris. Together with Prof. Monica Juneja, Michael Falser co-edited the volumes "Kulturerbe und Denkmalpflege transkulturell. Grenzgänge zwischen Theorie und Praxis" (Transcript 2013) and "'Archaeologizing' Heritage?Transcultural Entanglements between Local Social Practices and Global Virtual Realities" (Transcultural Research – Heidelberg Studies on Asia and Europe in a Global Context, Springer 2013).

Further information:

Exhibition at the Musée Guimet

Film on the restoration of the plaster casts


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