Ice Age art: arrival of the modern mind @ the British Museum

Books & Boots

To the British Museum for their wonderful exhibition Ice Age art: arrival of the modern mind. The curators have assembled a few hundred, mostly small, some very small, artefacts from 40,000 to 10,000 years ago. 15 of them are selected for extended commentary on the audioguide. The exhibition is small and beautifully formed, like most of its contents – the audioguide takes only 45 minutes – which is just as well because you have to peer and strain to see a lot of the detail on the tiniest objects and there’s a lot to read for every one of the exhibits. By the end I was full.

Female figure sculpted from steatite. Found at Grimaldi, Italy, about 20,000 years old. Musee d'archeologie nationale. Photo RMN/Jean-Gilles Berizzi. Female figure sculpted from steatite. Found at Grimaldi, Italy, about 20,000 years old. Musee d’archeologie nationale. Photo RMN/Jean-Gilles Berizzi.

Two ideas The curators have had two ideas:

Idea 1 The ubiquity of design and artifice, the care and craft which went into…

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