Archaeological finds from Yamal will be shown at an exhibition in London
15:29 26 февраля 2020
Категории: News in English
The Museum of anthropology and ethnography of the Russian Academy of Sciences (the Kunstkamera) selected more than 40 items from its collections for display at the large-scale exhibition “Arctic: culture and climate” at the British Museum. Some of the exhibits that are being prepared for shipment to London will be displayed for the first time outside of Russia. The exhibition will be opened at the end of May and will run till the end of August.
43 items were selected from the Kunstkamera funds for the project. Among them there are shaman headdresses, caftans, tambourines and masks obtained in numerous Siberian expeditions of the Museum, as well as archaeological finds from the ancient settlement Ust-Poluy on the Yamal Peninsula, which are about two thousand years old, as TASS reports. Speaking about the latter, Stanislav Belsky, a senior researcher at the division of archaeology in the Museum of anthropology and ethnography of the Russian Academy of Sciences, explained that they belonged to the collection made by the archaeologist from Leningrad Vasiliy Adrianov in the 30-s of the XX century within the modern Salekhard.
“For very long time the collection was not known, although from the very beginning it aroused great interest of scientists. In fact, it was considered a world discovery, at least in archaeology of the North. A lot of art objects made of bone and various metals were found there. Most likely, it was a sacred place that existed during several centuries, where people came and brought various items”, Belsky said.
According to him, items from the collection have never been sent abroad. Among the items Belsky named a unique item that has no analogues: a breast plate made of whale bone and purposed for protection during a battle. According to him, scientists do not know exactly which of the peoples, who inhabited this territory, the object belonged to. Presumably, they were the ancestors of modern Khanty and Mansi peoples.
“The British Museum invited us to participate in this interesting exhibition. This is useful for us, if only because it is really not only the presentation of items from the Kunstkamera on the world museum stage, but also the topic itself is very interesting, because both warming and the Arctic are in our field of view (one of the leading scientific topics). We responded with interest, wrote articles in the catalog, send items and accompany with our comments and opinions, including those showing that warming and all sorts of fluctuations are not new for the Arctic. For example, Nenets people have a legend that every two thousand years the flood comes, it covers the earth, and people die, then they appear again and live again for two thousand years”, said the director of the Kunstkamera Andrey Golovnev.
Vladimir Davydov, the deputy director of the Kunstkamera for scientific work, said that four curtain drawings (decorative panels) created by the self-taught artist Nikolay Shakhov in the Tobolsk province in the 30-40-s of the XIX century will also go to London.
“They depict local inhabitants, Nenets and Khanty peoples. Here it is possible to see various scenes from everyday life of local residents, this is such a multi-dimensional picture. Both economic activities (fishing and hunting) and relations between people are shown”, he said.