Heaven and Earth: Art of Byzantium from Greek Collections opened last Saturday at the Art Institute of Chicago.
The exhibition presents over 60 works of art from the early Christian and Byzantine era—many of which have never been exhibited outside of Greece— from shimmering mosaics to luxury glass and painted icons.
This is an abridged version of a larger show that traveled to the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., and J. Paul Getty Museum in Los Angeles. Because of scheduling conflicts, the exhibition could not be presented in the Art Institute’s main temporary exhibition gallery, so it had to be reduced to fit into a more compact space, the Mary and Michael Jaharis Galleries of Greek, Roman and Byzantine Art.
Karen Manchester, the Art Institute’s curator of ancient art, said the moment she learned of the exhibition, she started looking for a way to bring it to Chicago, which boasts one of the largest Greek-speaking populations in the world.