Treasures from Tutankhamun’s tomb on display in Paris

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A photographer walks by wooden Shabtis in gilded Nemes head dress and broad collar displayed as part of 'Tutankhamun, the treasure of the Pharaoh', an exhibition in partnership with the Grand Egyptian Museum at the Grande Halle of La Villette in Paris, France, Thursday, March 21, 2019. (AP)
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A gilded wooden "Ostrich Hunt" fan is displayed as part of 'Tutankhamun, the treasure of the Pharaoh', an exhibition in partnership with the Grand Egyptian Museum at the Grande Halle of La Villette in Paris, France, Thursday, March 21, 2019. (AP)
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A Tutankhamun's wishing cup in the form of an open Lotus and two buds is displayed as part of 'Tutankhamun, the treasure of the Pharaoh', an exhibition in partnership with the Grand Egyptian Museum at the Grande Halle of La Villette in Paris, France, Thursday, March 21, 2019. (AP)
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A visitor walks by a wooden guardian statue of the Ka of the king wearing the Names Headcloth displayed as part of 'Tutankhamun, the treasure of the Pharaoh', an exhibition in partnership with the Grand Egyptian Museum at the Grande Halle of La Villette in Paris, France, Thursday, March 21, 2019. (AP)
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The gold sandals from mummy of Tutankhamun are displayed as part of 'Tutankhamun, the treasure of the Pharaoh', an exhibition in partnership with the Grand Egyptian Museum at the Grande Halle of La Villette in Paris, France, Thursday, March 21, 2019. (AP)
Updated 21 March 2019
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Treasures from Tutankhamun’s tomb on display in Paris

  • Some items are returning to Paris more than 50 years after a similar exhibit attracted 1.24 million visitors

PARIS: Original artifacts from Tutankhamun’s tomb are on display in Paris in an exhibit celebrating the centenary of the discovery of the most famous pharaoh’s treasures.
Some items are returning to Paris more than 50 years after a similar exhibit attracted 1.24 million visitors, a record that still stands for the French capital.
Organizers say more than a third of the artifacts are leaving Egypt for the first and last time before going to a new museum being built near the Giza Pyramids in Egypt.
Tutankhamun’s tomb was discovered in 1922 by British archaeologist Howard Carter, about 3,400 years after his death.
The exhibit “Tutankhamun, treasures of the golden pharaoh” is on view at Paris’ Grande Halle de la Villette from March 23 to Sept. 15, the second stop on a 10-city international tour.


Lefaucheux revolver ‘Van Gogh killed himself with’ up for auction

Updated 17 June 2019
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Lefaucheux revolver ‘Van Gogh killed himself with’ up for auction

  • Van Gogh experts believe that he shot himself with the gun near the village of Auvers-sur-Oise north of Paris
  • The seven-millimeter Lefaucheux revolver is expected to fetch up to $67,000

PARIS: The revolver with which Vincent van Gogh is believed to have shot himself is to go under the hammer Wednesday at a Paris auction house.
Billed as “the most famous weapon in the history of art,” the seven mm Lefaucheux revolver is expected to fetch up to $67,000 (€60,000).
Van Gogh experts believe that he shot himself with the revolver near the village of Auvers-sur-Oise north of Paris, where he spent the last few months of his life in 1890.
Discovered by a farmer in 1965 in the same field where the troubled Dutch painter is thought to have fatally wounded himself, the gun has already been exhibited at the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam.
While Art Auction, who are selling the gun, say there is no way of being absolutely certain that it is the fatal weapon, tests showed it had been in the ground for 75 years, which would fit.
The Dutch artist had borrowed the gun from the owner of the inn in the village where he was staying.
He died 36 hours later after staggering wounded back to the auberge in the dark.
It was not his first dramatic act of self-harm. Two years earlier in 1888, he cut off his ear before offering it to a woman in a brothel in Arles in the south of France.
While most art historians agree that Van Gogh killed himself, that assumption has been questioned in recent years, with some researchers claiming that the fatal shot may have been fired accidentally by two local boys playing with the weapon in the field.
That theory won fresh support from a new biopic of the artist starring Willem Dafoe, “At Eternity’s Gate.”
Its director, the renowned American painter Julian Schnabel, said that Van Gogh had painted 75 canvasses in his 80 days at Auvers-sur-Oise and was unlikely to be suicidal.
The legendary French screenwriter Jean-Claude Carriere — who co-wrote the script with Schnabel — insisted that there “is absolutely no proof he killed himself.
“Do I believe that Van Gogh killed himself? Absolutely not!” he declared when the film was premiered at the Venice film festival last September.
He said Van Gogh painted some of his best work in his final days, including his “Portrait of Dr. Gachet,” the local doctor who later tried to save his life.
It set a world record when it sold for $82.5 million in 1990.
The bullet Dr. Gachet extracted from Van Gogh’s chest was the same caliber as the one used by the Lefaucheux revolver.
“Van Gogh was working constantly. Every day he made a new work. He was not at all sad,” Carriere argued.
In the film the gun goes off after the two young boys, who were brothers, got into a struggle with the bohemian stranger.
Auction Art said that the farmer who found the gun in 1965 gave it to the owners of the inn at Auvers-sur-Oise, whose family are now selling it.
“Technical tests on the weapon have shown the weapon was used and indicate that it stayed in the ground for a period that would coincide with 1890,” it said.
“All these clues give credence to the theory that this is the weapon used in the suicide.”
That did not exclude, the auction house added, that the gun could also have been hidden or abandoned by the two young brothers in the field.
The auction comes as crowds are flocking to an immersive Van Gogh exhibition in the French capital which allows “the audience to enter his landscapes” through projections on the gallery’s walls, ceilings and floors.
“Van Gogh, Starry Night” runs at the Atelier des Lumieres in the east of the city until December.