The First Art Newspaper on the Net Established in 1996 United States Sunday, April 20, 2014


Musée du Quai Branly Explores the Myth Embodied by Edgar Rice Burroughs' Tarzan
Tarzan et la femme léopard. © 1946 Sol Lesser Productions, Tous droits réservés. © Tarzan TM and Edgar Rice Burroughs TM owned by Edgar Rice Burroughs, Inc. and Used by Permission. Archives Stanislas Choko.
PARIS.- Tarzan was a literary phenomenon from the very first book published in 1912, and soon appeared in comic strips, radio programmes, television series and films. The character, who features in many media such as posters, figurines, CDs and even games, continues to fascinate and fuel our vision of an imaginary, fantasy Africa.

In the exhibition Tarzan! or Rousseau and the Waziri, the Musée du Quai Branly, in collaboration with the Centre International de la Bande Dessinée et de l’Image (International Centre for Comic Books and Image), explores the myth embodied by this popular icon.

Through a series of objects from the collections of several French museums, as well as original comic strips, photos, excerpts of films, etc., the exhibition allows the public to discover the legend of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ famous character in the collective images and representations he embodies, which are the cornerstones of some of the greatest legends of our age.

Edgar Rice Burroughs
Edgar Rice Burroughs was born in 1875 in Chicago. At first he wanted to enter the military, but gave up after failing the entrance exam for West Point. He then had a string of jobs that gave him his taste for adventure: train conductor and gold miner, among others. He then began writing, and published his first novel Under the Moons of Mars in 1912 in the “All Story” magazine. In October of the same year, Tarzan of the Apes was published, the first of the 26 novels about the famous “Ape-man”. Edgar Rice Burroughs died in 1950, having published more than 90 volumes in his lifetime, and having created other legendary characters found in the tales of Venus, the Pellucidar cycle and the adventures of John Carter.

The Myth of Tarzan
Edgar Rice Burroughs had never been to Africa, but in creating Tarzan, he was inspired by many legends, characters such as Mowgli the jungle boy in Rudyard Kipling’s Jungle Book, the noble savage, the lost Eden, the myth of the Great Ape (King Kong) and even the ancient Greek hero Hercules. He made Tarzan a real modern Western superhero/superman living in an imaginary and idealised Africa in which he accomplishes increasingly incredible exploits in adventure after adventure.

Edgar Rice Burroughs was quick to understand that the art of story telling in the 20th century was not limited to literature. He very quickly sold the rights to his novels to the Hollywood studios, and actively participated in the film adaptations. Since then, the Tarzan character has directly inspired around fifty films (including the famous performances by Johnny Weissmuller as a statuesque Tarzan, and by Christopher Lambert, cast as a romantic hero) as well as comic strips (particularly those by Burne Hogarth, whose talent, inspiration and fascination with the body in movement made him the master of the comic strip renewal and the forefather of many later artists), video games, CDs, games, as well as numerous imitations of the character (Tarou, Akim, Zembla and even Rahan). Nowadays, Tarzan remains an instantly recognisable figure through the characteristics that contribute to his iconic status: the vines, the leopard skin loincloth and his unique cry.

The Exhibition
The exhibition Tarzan! or Rousseau with the Waziri is built on several themes, representative of the universe of Edgar Rice Burroughs’ character, enriched by many objects from the collections of the Musée du Quai Branly, as well as the Louvre, the musée d’Orsay and the museums of Fontainebleau, Poissy and the Cité Internationale de la Bande dessinée in Angoulême.

The exhibition opens with an object showing Hercules shooting a bow and arrow, reminding visitors of the parallel between the two heroes who had to use strength and courage to overthrow evil in an imaginary and reconstructed universe. Throughout the exhibition, visitors are immersed in an atmosphere that mirrors Tarzan’s world, thanks to a specially created original soundtrack, a collection of comic strip images (including Burne Hogarth’s original plates), stuffed wild animals and excerpts from Hollywood films.

Visitors discover Tarzan’s universe through several themes, including Film and Tarzan, The Jungle, Tarzan’s Africa (with the Zulu, Masai, Kikuyu and leopard-men wearing the skins of big cats, Lego-like characters reflecting colonial imagery), the son of Mother Nature (in parallel with the myth of Romulus and Remus), the twelve labours of Tarzan (evoking the mythical hero Hercules), the saviour of the jungle (a pro-ecology anti-hunting figure who was against the ivory traffickers and other slave traders who were popular at the time), as well as numerous parodies making light of Tarzan.

The exhibition ends with the robot from Metropolis (Fritz Lang, 1927), symbol of the mechanical hero who invades the urban landscape. Tarzan represents the anti-robot, the naked man faced with the decadence of modern cities.

Curator
Roger Boulay, a Doctor of Ethnology, was director of the Oceania Collections in the Musée National des Arts d’Afrique et d’Océanie (National Museum of African and Oceanian Arts), and was entrusted with the museum programme of the Tjibaou Cultural Centre in Nouméa. Until 2008, he was responsible for the Oceanian collections at the Direction des Musées de France and the museums of Tahiti and New Caledonia for the creation of museum exhibitions and projects to inventory heritage.

He was curator of the exhibition Kannibals et Vahinés (Cannibals and Vahinés) at the Musée National des Arts d’Afrique et d’Océanie (MNAAO) in 2001, and the exhibition Festetics de Tolna, l’aristocrate et ses cannibales (Festetics de Tolna, the aristocrat and his cannibals), at the Musée du Quai Branly from 23 October 2007 to 13 January 2008.


Musée du Quai Branly | Tarzan | Edgar Rice Burroughs | John Carter | Jungle Book | King Kong | Christopher Lambert | Johnny Weissmuller |


Today's News

June 16, 2009

Musée du Quai Branly Explores the Myth Embodied by Edgar Rice Burroughs' Tarzan

The Madonna Nudes - 30th Anniversary Exhibition to Open in Seven Dials as Madonna Fever Hits London

National Gallery of Art Hosts Work Rescued from Earthquake with The Beffi Triptych

Galleria dell'Accademia Presents Robert Mapplethorpe. Perfection in Form

Selected Works from the Francois Pinault Collection on View at Palais des Arts in Dinard

artnet Launches Icons: 20th-21st Century Photographic Portraits Sale

New Work by New York Based Video Artist Aida Ruilova at the Hammer Museum

MoMA to Present New Photography 2009: Walead Beshty, Daniel Gordon, Leslie Hewitt and Carter Mull

Gast Bouschet & Nadine Hilbert Collaborate in Collision Zone at La Biennale

Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts Celebrates 19th Century Landscapes with Loan Exhibition

Iosif Király's Reconstructions on View at Museo de Semana Santa as Part of PHotoEspaña 2009

A Contemporary Exhibition Opens at Dulwich Picture Gallery: The Polish Connection

Photographs of the First Naval Action of Mexican Revolution Located

Mexican 17th and 18th Centuries Oil Paintings Undergo Color Restoration

Atlanta Botanical Garden and High Museum Partner for "Moore & Monet" Joint Ticket

National Gallery Holds Special Director' s Event for Those with Specific Access Needs

King Tut Exhibition at Dallas Museum of Art Makes History with Highest Attendance on Record

Smithsonian' s National Postal Museum Celebrates Flag Day with an Online Featured Collection

National Endowment for the Arts Announces Highlights from 2008 Survey of Public Participation in the Arts

Family Abstracts and the Familiar on View at Oakville Galleries

Most Popular Last Seven Days



1.- 'World's oldest message in a bottle', tossed in sea 101 years ago, reaches granddaughter

2.- East-West/West-East: Qatar unveils desert sculpture by American artist Richard Serra

3.- Ming-era 'chicken cup' sells for $36.05 million breaking record for Chinese porcelain

4.- United States pastor Kevin Sutherland convicted over Damien Hirst fake paintings

5.- Major exhibition at Pinacothèque de Paris explores the myth of Cleopatra

6.- Fondation Vincent van Gogh Arles opens with inaugural exhibition "Van Gogh Live!"

7.- Landmark exhibition opens in New York exploring the ancient kingdoms of Southeast Asia

8.- Palm-sized scroll that mentions Jesus's wife is ancient: Harvard Theological Review

9.- Hitler's wife Eva Braun may have had Jewish ancestry: British television documentary

10.- Bonhams to sell Madame de Pompadour's favourite porcelain which surfaced in Devon after 350 years

Related Stories



Baba Bling: The Peranakan Chinese of Singapore at the Musée du Quai Branly

Musée du quai Branly Proposes the Discovery of an "Image Factory"

Musée du Quai Branly Opens Exhibition of the Legendary Teotihuacan



Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 

Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Rmz. - Marketing: Carla Gutiérrez
Special Contributor: Liz Gangemi - Special Advisor: Carlos Amador
Contributing Editor: Carolina Farias

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org theavemaria.org juncodelavega.org facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site