Marking the 500th anniversary of Raphael's death, emerging artists responded to one of the Renaissance master's spectacular drawings.
Visitors could explore the parallels between Raphael's artistic practice and development to those of contemporary artists Erin Adderley, Crystal Chia, Yulin Huang, Hanne Peeraer, Ti-Jean Roberts and Eva Suhajek.
Made when he himself was an emerging artist, the front (or 'recto') of the Raphael drawing on display showed his take on figures from Michelangelo's iconic Battle of Cascina, illustrating how he found his artistic voice by studying his peers. The drawing on the back ('verso') was of the Virgin Mary and was drawn using different media and techniques, showing the diversity of Raphael's drawing practice.
The contemporary works on display illuminated key aspects of Raphael's process and subject matter and offered modern responses related to issues of idealised beauty, artistic development and the iconic status of Renaissance artists.
These displays were made possible by the support of The Asahi Shimbun Company, longstanding corporate sponsors of the British Museum. The Asahi Shimbun is a Japanese leading newspaper and the company also provides a substantial information service via the internet. The company has a century-long tradition of philanthropic support, notably staging key exhibitions in Japan on art, culture and history from around the world. In addition to the Asahi Shimbun Displays, The Asahi Shimbun Company is a committed supporter of the British Museum touring exhibition programme in Japan, and funder of The Asahi Shimbun Gallery of Amaravati sculpture in Room 33a.