Zeugma Mosaics Return Home
By Aslihan Aydin
Published: Monday July 11, 2005
The Zeugma mosaics will finally come home to Gaziantep. Gaziantep
has been waiting for a museum for a long while, and now it will
be opened by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on June 23.
Last year, the Culture and Tourism Ministry of Erkan Mumcu announced
the mosaics were going to be exhibited in Istanbul for 8 months
in the framework of the NATO Summit, but the Gazientep public stopped
the move by contesting it in court. Turkey spent approximately TL5
trillion on the arrangement of the museum. While the excavation
work goes on, the public eagerly awaits the opening of the museum.
In the museum, 36 pieces of mosaic will be displayed including the
Gypsy girl mosaic, the most important and famous work of art found
there. In addition to the Dionizos wedding mosaic, the Diadolos
mosaic, the Okeanos and the Tethis mosaic, a statue of Mars is among
the distinguished works of art to be displayed in the museum. The
Gaziantep public believes that the museum will develop tourism in
the region. It will be opened by Erdogan despite Erkan Mumcu's attempt
to close it.
The position of Gypsy girl in the museum has been much discussed
as it is among the most important works of art taken out from the
antique city. While this mosaic is used as a symbol of Gaziantep,
it is still not clear where the gypsy girl with striking eyes will
be positioned, whether in a central position or in a small place
to create a more mysterious effect. Museum officials want the mosaic
to be given a central place in the middle of the museum while those
who organizing the opening of the museum want it to be displayed
in a small room.