Wednesday, 23 March 2011
The British Museum - Afghanistan Exhibition
Today's post looks at the spectacular new exhibition being held at The British Museum - Afghanistan: Crossroads of the Ancient World.
The exhibition showcases some beautiful pieces from a beautiful country, that has unfortunately been ravaged by war over its recent history. Located on the ancient silk roads between India, China, the Middle East and Eastern Europe, Afghanistan has been influenced by many cultures over the years.
The exhibition follows a timeline of Afghanistan's history, dating back to several thousand years BC, right up to the present day.
"Nearly lost during the years of civil war and Taliban rule, these surviving treasures reveal Afghanistan's ancient culture, its immense fragility and its remarkable place in world history" (British Museum)
The treasures featured include: pottery, glassware, sculptures, coins, statues, jewellery and possessions of travellers from along the ancient silk trading routes. There are brightly coloured pieces of glassware that were influenced by ancient Egyptians in their design and a magnificent golden crown that is pictured at the start of this post.
The exhibition begins with a video that portrays the beauty of the country as well as some of the more poignant images from recent times. It does however provide a fantastic overview of the country, its history and the lengths that its people will go to, to protect their ancient treasures.
Although not large in the physical sense, the exhibition does showcase a large number of items. I visited the day after it opened and in my opinion, the time slots given for admittance should have been spaced a little further apart. There is an obvious route to follow round the exhibition, but don't expect to pop in for a quick look as it can get quite busy.
To access the exhibtion entrance if you use a wheelchair, mobility scooter or cannot manage stairs, use the lift at the back of the round Millennium building that stands in the centre of the museum's grand foyer. Once inside, the exhibition is all on the same level and there is a different lift at the end of the exhibition, past the gift shop, that can take you back down to ground level.
The cost to visit the exhibition is: Adults - £10 Children - FREE Disabled Visitors - £8 Carer - FREE.
To access the museum itself if you use a wheelchair, mobility scooter or cannot manage stairs, there are 2 lifts, 1 either side of the entrance steps that will lift you up to the entrance level. For more information on access, please call the museum's Access and Equality Manager on 020 7323 8506.
This is a fantastic exhibition and one not to be missed. It runs until 3rd July 2011.
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COMING NEXT - Spring in the Royal Parks
COMING SOON - Love Never Dies, The National Gallery