The Hall of Ancient Egypt at HMNS to reopen with new objects, stunning technology, immersive installations


November 11, 2021
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HOUSTON—TheHouston Museum of Natural Science (HMNS) is proud to announce its completely re-imagined 12,500 sq. ft. Hall of Ancient Egypt that will open Nov. 20 in conjunction with the world premiere of the 20,000 sq. ft. special exhibition entitled Ramses the Great and the Gold of the Pharaohs.

The Ramses the Great exhibition—a partnership between HMNS and the Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities in Cairo—begins its six-year, 10-city world tour in Houston. Tickets to the Ramses the Great exhibition also allow patrons exclusive access to the new Hall of Ancient Egypt. The Hall of Ancient Egypt is generously supported by Apache Corporation.

This historic pairing is available only at HMNS through May 23, 2022. It provides visitors with a comprehensive, dramatic, entertaining, and immersive ancient Egyptian experience unlike anything available anywhere in the world–outside Egypt itself.

“When we took on the challenge of building a major new permanent Hall of Ancient Egypt here in Houston, at the same time we were working with our Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities partners to organize, launch and premiere this major international exhibition tour, we knew that both projects had to not only be absolutely world-class, the exhibitions also needed to complement one another—AND absolutely “wow” even our most jaded visitors,” said HMNS President & CEO Joel Bartsch. “The world premiere of these two major exhibitions also underscores our commitment to our partnership with the Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities; a partnership that we expect to flourish in years to come.”

“The new Hall of Ancient Egypt is a major step forward for us,” said HMNS Curator Tom Hardwick. “We are finally able to give the story of ancient Egypt its due. Using recent scholarship, cutting-edge technology, and the vivid imaginations of our in-house creative team, we can create exhibition experiences that we couldn’t have imagined a few short years ago.”

The new Hall of Ancient Egypt is a feast for the senses, including 92 cases of objects, some over 5,000 years old. The exhibit is arranged over eight rooms, covering many aspects of ancient Egyptian life, including fashion, religious devotion, mummification, and burial—all set in immersive environments painstakingly recreated. HMNS exhibit designers visited Egypt and explored numerous temples, towns, and tombs to accurately recreate the art and architecture found on the walls of ancient burial chambers, temple walls, and royal throne rooms.

“Most people may never have the chance to travel to Egypt and explore the extensively decorated tombs and temples,” Hardwick said. “We paid extremely close attention to detail in a concerted effort to create artistic environments that would transport visitors to another time and place, allowing the “look and feel” of ancient Egypt to wash over them as they explore the various immersive settings. Museum curators and designers researched the paints and pigments preferred by the ancient Egyptians, allowing them to accurately express, with eye-popping clarity, the ancient Egyptian penchant for lavishly covering temples, tombs, and monuments. A wide variety of striking symbols and designs have been rendered in astonishingly vibrant colors.

Museum patrons will be delighted to see many familiar ancient Egyptian objects, alongside newly available pieces carefully selected by Hardwick to tell a more in-depth story of this enigmatic civilization than ever before. With each passing year, ongoing excavations in the field, combined with continued research by scholars, have helped complete the history and mystery behind what the peoples of pharaonic Egypt are all about, and both exhibitions reflect that never-ending quest.

“The aim is to bring Houston a more comprehensive view of the place and purpose behind these colossal Egyptian monuments. Museums typically display isolated fragments and other smaller objects completely out of context. Using this immersive approach, we will give visitors a better idea of the how, the where, and the why,” Hardwick said.

Ramses the Great and the Gold of the Pharaohs andthe Hall of Ancient Egypt opens Nov. 20 at the Houston Museum of Natural Science. Museum members see the exhibition first on Nov. 19. Tickets are on sale now. Admission is $20 for members; $35 for adults; $27 for children and seniors (60+). Visit HMNS.org for tickets and information.

About Houston Museum of Natural Science

The Houston Museum of Natural Science—one of the nation’s most heavily attended museums—is a centerpiece of the Houston Museum District. With four floors of permanent exhibit halls, and the Wortham Giant Screen Theatre, Cockrell Butterfly Center, Burke Baker Planetarium and George Observatory and as host to world-class and ever-changing touring exhibitions, the Museum has something to delight every age group. With such diverse and extraordinary offerings, a trip to the Houston Museum of Natural Science, located at 5555 Hermann Park Drive in the heart of the Museum District, is always an adventure.

About Apache Corporation

Apache Corporation is a global energy company with operations in Egypt, the United Kingdom and the United States. The company produces oil and natural gas that is critical to helping meet the world’s energy needs. Where there is reliable, abundant energy, people are healthier, have access to better education, and are given greater opportunities to elevate their families to higher standards of living.

Apache has operated in Egypt for 25 years and is the largest American investor and largest oil producer in the country. The company founded Springboard Girls Schools more than 15 years ago and has constructed over 200 schools where approximately 15,000 girls living in rural areas of Egypt have learned to read and write. Apache is a wholly-owned subsidiary of APA Corporation (Nasdaq: APA). Learn more at www.apacorp.com.

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The Houston Museum of Natural Science

One of the nation's most heavily attended museums-is a centerpiece of the Houston Museum District. With four floors of permanent exhibit halls, and the Wortham Giant Screen Theatre, Cockrell Butterfly Center, Burke Baker Planetarium, and George Observatory, and as host to world-class and ever-changing touring exhibitions, the Museum has something to delight every age group. With such diverse and extraordinary offerings, a trip to the Houston Museum of Natural Science, located at 5555 Hermann Park Drive in the heart of the Museum District, is always an adventure.

Visit HMNS.org


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