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01/28/2019 05:00 PM ISAW Lecture Hall

Opening of the Digital Exhibition: “The Sogdians: Influencers on the Silk Roads”

Organized by Judith A. Lerner (ISAW) and Thomas Wide (Freer|Sackler)

This “born-digital” event celebrates the going “live” of the first exhibition, digital or otherwise, devoted to the Sogdians, a Central Asian Iranian people who served as “middlemen” in the circulation of people and commodities as well as religious and artistic ideas, along the Silk Roads, during the 5th to 8th centuries CE. The exhibition combines the latest academic research with a variety of digital media– from interactive maps to 3D photogrammetry, drone footage of archaeological sites to video interviews with leading scholars. It is a case study of how the digital humanities can bring scholarship on the ancient world to new audiences.
01/31/2019 06:00 PM ISAW Lecture Hall
02/05/2019 06:00 PM ISAW Lecture Hall

Assyria Identities

The Role of Elite Individuals in the Art of Assyria

David Kertai

Kings play an outsized role in the historical recollection of the Assyrian Empire. The Assyrian rulers themselves deliberately fostered this notion of royal predominance and omnipresence through royal images situated throughout the empire. The Mesopotamian conceptualization of images, however, diverged from our own in several respects: it neither demanded mimesis nor privileged naturalism. Assyrian royal images were not designed to showcase individual physiognomic features, but to communicate the status of the king as divinely perfected (and nearly indistinguishable) examples of Assyrian kingship. Empires, however, are not ruled by their kings alone but are better understood as collaborative enterprises. This raises the question of how other Assyrian elites, such as eunuchs and queens, were able to represent themselves. This lecture will explore the ways in which these groups and individuals were able to negotiate, establish, and communicate their own roles and status within the Assyrian imperial enterprise.
02/12/2019 06:00 PM ISAW Lecture Hall

The Archaeology of Colors

Polychromy and Classical Chinese Bronze Art

Allison Miller

02/19/2019 06:00 PM ISAW Lecture Hall

Mastering Speed

The Bronze Age of Mongolia

Ursula Brosseder

02/26/2019 06:00 PM ISAW Lecture Hall

New York Aegean Bronze Age Colloquium: The Recently Discovered Kiln Complex at Gournia

Its Construction and Operation within the Late Minoan IA Settlement

Brian S. Kunkel

In 2014, a series of ceramic kilns was discovered on the northern edge of the Gournia settlement. Together the kilns formed a large complex that included multiple phases of construction. The complex dates exclusively to the Late Minoan IA period, and the kilns generally conform to the Minoan cross-draught channel type. Although this type is known from other sites in Crete, there are none that represent so many individual phases of construction. In total, 16 separate kilns were identified, which consisted primarily of fragmentary channels and fuel chambers often built over top of one another. While none of the pottery found in or around the kilns comes from an actual firing episode, an examination of the facility's construction and location could help to answer important questions regarding the organization of production.
02/28/2019 06:00 PM ISAW Lecture Hall

Theodore N. Romanoff Lecture (ARCE): "The Medium is the Message"

The Mechanics of Egyptian Royal Living-Rock Stelae

Jennifer Grice Thum

We usually think of ancient Egypt as a culture of 'big building,' especially at the hands of the king. Yet there are some cases where royal stelae, bearing the officially sanctioned messages of the royal establishment, were inscribed into natural features rather than being set up in architectural spaces. These stelae were carved directly into 'living rock'--outcrops that are still where they were formed geologically. How did Egyptian views of living rock as a material inform this practice, and how was this monument type perceived to 'work'? This lecture explores the circumstances that led Egyptian kings to use the landscape as a monumental medium, and what those messages can tell us about how the landscape was understood.
03/12/2019 06:00 PM ISAW Lecture Hall

Return to Sumer

New Archaeological Investigations in South Iraq

Stephanie Rost

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