Regular visitors to the Ancient World Gallery at World Museum may have noticed that one of our statues, Apollo Sauroktonos (Apollo the Lizard-Killer), a Roman copy of a famous statue by the Greek sculptor Praxiteles, hasn't been on display since the summer. That's because the statue is on loan to Cleveland Museum of Art in the USA, where it's one of the star items in the special exhibition 'Praxiteles: The Cleveland Apollo', which is open until 5th January 2014.
I was recently on holiday in Cleveland to see 'our' Apollo alongside the bronze Apollo from the Cleveland Museum of Art and a marble Apollo from the Louvre in Paris, the first time that all three sculptures have been displayed together.
My guide to the exhibition was Dr Michael Bennett, my counterpart at the Cleveland Museum of Art. Dr Bennett and I
discussed his theory that the Cleveland Apollo, is an original work by Praxiteles, and accordingly dates from the 4th century BC. Furthermore, he suggests that, when complete, the Cleveland Apollo would have shown the god killing a python rather than a lizard, and that the statue was probably originally erected at the Sanctuary of Apollo at Delphi, in central Greece. Do take time to follow the link to read more about the exhibition!
The loan of the Apollo has meant that I have been able to have another statue on display - a statue of Dionysos, god of wine and the theatre, shown as a young man. I hope you'll come and visit us soon to see Dionysos, and the other splendid Roman sculptures in the Ancient World Gallery.