A patchwork of bronze can be found on the Beautiful Door.
is made all the more remarkable as it is said to have originated from the Temple of Tarsus, in eastern Turkey, in the second century BC. Monumental bronze over 2000 years old, wrapped around a wooden core.
It is said to have been moved to Hagia Sophia, Istanbul, by Emperor Theophilos in the 9th century AD. Even now, over 1000 years later, it is a significant threshold, a last exist to the tourist. So long has the Beautiful Door stood here that subsequent floors have been built around it, the lower portion sealed beneath the ground, now unable to close.
Creativity in the Bronze Age, and contemporary responses to it, will be explored at an important conference next year at the University of Cambridge: more details can be found on the CinBA Conference-Flyer. The conference is part of an ongoing research project ‘Creativity and Craft Production in Middle and Late Bronze Age Europe’ (CinBA), further details of which can be found at the CinBA project website. I would certainly recommend exploring the website of this fascinating and innovative research project.
One striking example of the way in which contemporary responses to the Bronze Age have been addressed by the project was through engaging with contemporary artists who have explored aspects of Bronze Age material culture through a variety of mediums. Please have a look at the great example of ceramics produced by students who worked on the project, as part of Santorini Biennale of Arts 2012, which can be seen in an exhibition catalogue. Another fantastic example of works inspired by knowledge of the Bronze Age by contemporary craft students can also be viewed in a booklet.
Importantly the research seeks to develop practices which go beyond the ‘current state of the art’ and its results may have some exciting impacts, such as providing
‘the basis for new types of heritage experiences in which creative potentials of objects are more imaginatively explored, as well as offering inspiration and new roles for the contemporary craft sector.’
A project which is well worth watching for its results.
The CinBA project was one of nine funded by HERA (Humanities in the European Research Area) researching aspects of creativity.
I wonder what the other eight projects are researching ?