2 abril-1 septiembre 2019
1 April to 1 September 2019
OrganisedSalto de línea Museu d’Arqueologia de Catalunya
CuratorsSalto de línea Carme Rovira y Gabriel de Prado
Opening hoursSalto de línea Tuesday-Saturday: 9:30 – 20:00Salto de línea Sundays and public holidays: 9:30 – 15:00
Wednesday and Friday, 18:00
The National Archaeology Museum is hosting an exhibition dedicated to trophy heads and their meaning from ancient times to the modern day.
This touring production from the Archaeology Museum of Catalonia presents archaeological and ethnographic items from various museums, as well as artistic iconography and audiovisual resources which illustrate the occurrence of this phenomenon around the world, and which allow visitors to discover its origins and broad cultural dimensions.
The oldest remains on display date back to the Iron Age. In those times the Iberians in the most northern part of the country were some of the peoples who prepared and publically displayed the severed heads of their defeated enemies as trophies, sometimes alongside seized weapons. This ritual custom and its staging reaffirmed leaders’ power.
The Iberian collections from the Archaeology Museum of Catalonia are the only examples of their kind and are therefore given pride of place in this exhibition. The so-called “nailed heads” from the Puig Castellar settlement are displayed, some for the first time, together with those recently discovered in the Iberian town of Ullastret. Modern analytical and forensic techniques have been used to study them, culminating in the first scientific reconstruction of the face of an Iberian, a young warrior from the third century BCE.
Severed heads. Symbols of power addresses a universal concept which has regained contemporary relevance in a striking manner and which blurs the boundaries between past and present.
This touring exhibition includes pieces from the settlements of Ullastret, Barcelona and Girona from the Archaeology Museum of Catalonia, and others from the National Museum of Anthropology and the Museum of the Americas in Madrid, the Museum of Ethnology and World Cultures in Barcelona, the Granollers Museum, the Numantine Museum of Soria, the Ca n’Oliver Museum in Cerdanyola del Vallès, as well as the Prehistory Museum of Valencia, the National Museum of Anthropology, the Museum of America in Madrid and the National Archaeological Museum itself.
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