A new exhibition unites the legend of Troy and the art of miniature


A new exhibition that combines the legend of Troy as told in Homer’s “Iliad” with the traditional arts of miniature, printmaking and ceramics has been launched at the Trojan Museum in Türkiye. “Troy: Every Form of Art” showcases Göksel Sevim’s 22-year experience in miniature art.

Göksel Sevim paints a miniature for the exhibition “Troy: Every Form of Art”.

The Troy Museum is an archaeological museum located near the archaeological site of the ancient city of Troy in the northwestern province of Çanakkale. Construction of the museum began in 2013 as part of a project organized by the Ministry of Culture and Tourism. It was officially opened by President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on March 18, 2019. The contents of the museum detail the archaeological history of Troy and its civilizations, which left their mark in the Troas region and were recorded in history with Homer’s Iliad. At least 2,000 artifacts discovered during the excavations are on display here.

The museum recently hosted the “Troy: All Forms of Art” exhibition, which offers insight into the history of the ancient site through the art of miniature.

Miniatures are a type of two-dimensional artwork that features small, finely crafted paintings that tell stories or convey information. In Ottoman times, those who practiced the craft were known as miniaturists. Ottoman miniature used a visual language to express its cultural diversity, cosmopolitan geography and expressive principles that developed over centuries. As the 19th century approached, the craft developed and began to appear more frequently on walls, canvas, wooden pieces, ceramics and leather. With its history spanning hundreds of years, miniature art is widely accepted as an important part of Turkish history and culture.

Overview of the works in the exhibition “Troy: All Forms of Art”.
Overview of the works in the exhibition “Troy: All Forms of Art”.

The artist behind the exhibit, Sevim, said she started painting miniatures of Troy with the encouragement of German archaeologist professor Manfred Osman Korfmann, who led the excavations at Troy for 17 years. “In one of our conversations, Mr. Korfmann said that there was no miniature for the ancient city of Troy. With that, I started painting miniatures for Troy, and Mr. Korfmann was my advisor during this process. Unfortunately, halfway through my studies, Mr. Korfmann passed away,” Sevim explained.

Taking a break from her studies for a while, Sevim later completed her miniatures of Troy, in which she depicted the details of her nine colonies. Noting that telling the stories of the legend of Troy through miniature art has become a passion for her, Sevim said she is very happy to have her work exhibited at the Trojan Museum.

“Troy: Every Form of Art” will be on display for art and history lovers at the Troy Museum until August 31.

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