What did the past smell like? This is a question that this article from Smithsonian Magazine tries to address. While it focusses on the attempts to recreate Cleopatra's perfume, it also talks about the importance of scent to culture and ways that we might recapture the scents of the past. link to Scientists Recreate Cleopatra's... Continue Reading →
This article from Smithsonian Magazine showcases the breadth of the influence of the Neo-Assyrian Empire. After saving an carved stone panel from looters, archeologists uncovered evidence that the Neo-Assyrian culture interacted with the Arameans in what is today Turkey. link to Ancient Rock Art Depicting Divine Procession...
Unfortunately, not all art is valued all of the time. In Italy, the traditional villages and their traditional way of life were seen as old and tired in the first half of the twentieth century, and many people moved to the city for a faster-paced, hopefully more lucrative life. Things are changing now, and Italy... Continue Reading →
This website presents a great variety of information on many subjects, including psychology, art, history, art history, etc. They've got a fairly comprehensive list of tags, and their search engine is very responsive. This is a great place to search for a topic or to do your initial research. link to The Collector
This carving from the Metropolitan Museum of Art is very interesting to me for several reasons. First, it is attributed to an "Old Assyrian Trading Colony," and it was found in what is now Turkey. Also, you don't often see female sphinxes, and most sphinxes come from Egypt. Added to that is the fact that... Continue Reading →
The Venus of Willendorf got its name from the place in Austria where it was found. However, this new article from Smithsonian Magazine, presents that theory that the Venus may have actually been made in Italy and transported to Austria by a group of hunter-gatherers. link to 3-D Scans Show 30,000-Year Old Stone Sculpture...
Are you interested in pottery, painting, or the Greeks? If so, then you should check out this great article from the Metropolitan Museum Journal. It discusses the often undervalued culture and art of the Greek Geometric Period. In particular it focusses on one specific Greek krater (wine vessel and/or grave marker). To download the article,... Continue Reading →
While Greek kraters could be used as communal vessels to dilute (with water) and serve wine, in the Geometric Period, they were also used as grave markers. This exquisite example from the Metropolitan Museum of Art showcases the deceased surrounded by mourners. It also shows a group of soldiers and horses. Note the stylized nature... Continue Reading →
Pearls have been important in many times and in many places. This video from the Victoria and Albert museum details just a bit of that history. link to A History of Pearls
In this article from 2017, ArtNet details the destruction (that was at that time still ongoing) of cultural heritage sites by ISIS. Stories like this show the destructive affect of war on art and culture (in addition to its painful consequences for people's lives and families). link to A Monumental Loss...
This website has so much information that it can get a little overwhelming, but luckily it also has a really effective search function. If you are looking for anything from humanities to art history to artistic techniques, My Modern Met may have what you need. link to My Modern Met
When we study the region of the ancient world known as Mesopotamia, we often focus only on a few major cultures: Sumer, Babylon, Akkad, Assyria, etc. However, there is evidence that there is more to the history of Mesopotamia. This article focusses on the evidence for the possible "Forgotten Kingdom" of Ebla. link to First... Continue Reading →
Ancient people produced many of the same things that we use in our modern world. Glass is one of those things, and the Romans were well known for the quality of their glass production. This article provides a wealth of information on the study of the practices of the Roman glass industry. link to Seeing... Continue Reading →
I recently shared translations of the poetry of the Akkadian author Enheduanna, and in that post, I mentioned that we have an image of the lady in question. This article showcases the relief that represents Enheduanna, and it provides a good amount of information both on that and on her life as well. link to... Continue Reading →
It always gives me great pleasure to remind people that the first author (whose name we know) was a woman. While her poetry is not quite as old as The Epic of Gilgamesh, Enheduanna's work is special because we know who wrote it (the author of The Epic of Gilgamesh remains anonymous). Even better, we... Continue Reading →