The Quest for Immortality National Gallery of Art
Funerary boat
Sphinx of Thutmose III June 30 - October 14 2002
Virtual Tour Step inside a full-scale reproduction of the tomb of Thutmose III
(QuickTime required)
Streaming Video View the exhibition film
The Quest for Immortality in Ancient Egypt. (10 min.)
Program transcript
(RealPlayer required)
Streaming Slideshows Examine details of selected objects while listening to informative narratives from the experts
(RealPlayer required)
Resources Exhibition Brochure (PDF 334K)
Family Guide (PDF 684K)
Map of Ancient Egypt
Press Materials
Learning Resources
Selected Objects View 18 objects from the exhibition
Exhibition Information | Technical Requirements

This exhibition is no longer on view at the National Gallery. Please follow the links below for related online resources or visit our current exhibitions schedule.

About the Exhibition

From the earliest times, Egyptians denied the physical impermanence of life. They formulated a remarkably complex set of religious beliefs and funneled vast material resources into the quest for immortality. This exhibition focuses on the understanding of the afterlife among Egyptians some 3,000 years ago, in the period of the New Kingdom (1550-1069 BC) through the Late Period (664-332 BC). The New Kingdom marked the beginning of an era of great wealth, power, and stability for Egypt, and was accompanied by a burst of cultural activity, much of which was devoted to the quest for eternal life.

The exhibition is divided into six sections: Journey to the Afterworld, The New Kingdom, The Royal Tomb, Tombs of Nobles, The Realm of the Gods, and The Tomb of Thutmose III.

Exhibition Overview

Tour Schedule

National Gallery of Art, Washington, June 30 - October 14, 2002
Museum of Science, Boston, November 20, 2002 - March 30, 2003
Kimbell Art Museum, Fort Worth, May 4 - September 14, 2003
New Orleans Museum of Art, October 19, 2003 - February 25, 2004
Milwaukee Public Museum, March 28 - August 8, 2004
Denver Museum of Nature and Science, September 12, 2004 - January 23, 2005
Guggenheim Hermitage, Las Vegas, March 5 - July 31, 2005
Dayton Art Institute, September 1, 2005 - January 3, 2006
Public Museum of Grand Rapids, Grand Rapids, Michigan, January 28, 2006 - May 7, 2006
Frist Center of the Visual Arts, Nashville, June 8 - October 8, 2006
Portland Art Museum, November 5, 2006 - March 4, 2007
The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, September 2 - December 31, 2007

The exhibition is supported in part by Chevy Chase Bank.

Press Materials (6/28/02)

Press Materials (6/26/02)

Press Materials (6/26/02)

Press Materials (6/20/02)

Technical Requirements

QuickTime VR
To view the QuickTime VR panoramas of the burial chamber, you will need Apple's free QuickTime software. Follow the directions on the Apple site for installation.

If you need more information or support using this program, please see our VR Tour FAQs (frequently asked questions) or the Apple QuickTime Technical Support site.

Streaming Slideshows
To view the streaming slideshows, you will need Real Networks' free player. Follow the directions on the Real Networks site for installation.

Adobe Acrobat PDF Files
To access the “Exhibition Brochure” and the “Family Guide,” you must have the Adobe Acrobat Reader. You can download Adobe Acrobat Reader free of charge at:

Controlling font size in your browser
These online resources use style sheets to control font size and page layout. To manually adjust the font size displayed, please follow the instructions included with your browser.

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