The 'Tutankhamun: Treasures of the Golden Pharaoh' exhibition, which opened on 23 March at the Grande Halle de la Villette in Paris and closed its doors yesterday, has attracted over 1.4 million visitors, setting a new record as the most visited exhibition in France.
Organised by the Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities and IMG, in collaboration with the Louvre, the exhibition was a unique opportunity to rediscover the story of the most famous of the pharaohs and celebrate the centenary of the discovery of the only intact ancient Egyptian royal tomb ever discovered.
“In 1967, the first Tutankhamun exhibition to visit France entitled 'Tutankhamun and his Times' attracted 1.2 million visitors to the Petit Palais in Paris. Today, and after 52 years, a few artefacts from the boy-king's treasures have attracted over 1.4 million visitors, attesting to the passion of France and the French people for Egyptology,” said Minister of Antiquities Khaled El-Enany.
The minister told Ahram Online that “even these two enormously successful exhibitions allowed the public to admire only a tiny segment of the thousands of unique objects in the collection of this magnificent Pharaoh, and Egypt’s invaluable heritage."
"I am sure that the immense interest in the exhibition at the Grande Halle de la Villette will encourage millions of visitors who are fascinated by Egypt and its civilisation to come and explore the major pieces of Tutankhamun’s treasure in Cairo and visit Egypt’s museums and remarkable sites,” the minister said.
“The exhibition’s success shows that Tutankhamun and his treasures still captivate the hearts of many enthusiasts. It is a unique experience to view these masterpieces dating back over 3,300 years. Thank you Paris,” said John Norman, managing director of exhibitions at IMG.
“We are delighted by the success of the Tutankhamun exhibition, which confirms, if confirmation was needed, how passionate the French people are about Egyptian antiquity. At the request of the Egyptian authorities, the Louvre Museum has been involved in the communication about the exhibition and it is in this context that I chose to loan the masterpiece of our collection: the statue of Amun protecting Tutankhamun, who has been a wonderful ambassador for the Louvre Museum at the entrance to the exhibition,” said Vincent Rondot, director of the Department of Egyptian Antiquities at the Louvre.
“I would like to thank the Egyptian authorities and IMG for trusting us with this project,” said Didier Fusillier, president of La Villette, who added that it was a great honour for La Villette team to host this historic exhibition at the Grande Halle. In addition to the huge success with the general public, over 100,000 visitors, including school children and disadvantaged groups from all over France, were able to enjoy the exhibition.