In this three-part series, Alastair Sooke goes in search of thirty treasures from ancient Egypt, but instead of viewing them as curious artefacts, he treats them as works of art. His journey starts in the depths of the Sahara where he finds some of the earliest Egyptian art carved into the rocks. He traces the emergence of the Egyptians distinctive visual style from painted pots to the pyramids and discovers some beautiful and surprising masterpieces. Along the way he meets modern artists and leading Egyptologists and discovers that Egyptian art was designed to last for eternity.
In the second episode of this three part series, Alastair Sooke seeks out ten treasures from the Golden Age of Egyptian art. His journey starts with troubling psychological portraits of the tough-as-nails king Senwosret III, and ends with the golden mask of Tutankhamun. He takes in ground breaking temples, beautiful tombs and a lost city, where the art of one of the greatest revolution in Egypt's history emerged from the sands. Along the way Egyptologists and artists reveal that the golden veneer conceals a touching humanity.
In the final episode of the series, Alastair Sooke completes his search for thirty treasures that tell the epic story of Egyptian art. He starts at the Great Temple of Abu Simbel, where colossal statues of Rameses II proclaim the Pharaoh's power. But he finds that there is more to Egyptian art than size as he encounters the art of the Egyptian workers. Some of it is free and rebellious and has influenced modern graffiti artists. Sooke also discovers that as Egypt declined, its art flourished as it took on broad foreign styles and looked to its glorious past for inspiration.
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