Mittwoch, 26. Februar 2020, 17:30

Entanglement of identities

Late Middle Kingdom faience figurines moving across time and space

Gianluca Miniaci (University of Pisa, Department of Civiltà e Forme del Sapere)


The imaginary world of ancient societies has been populated by a large number of images, which were often reproduced in small models and statuettes. A diagnostic category of objects for late Middle Kingdom (1800–1650 BC) plastic arts is represented by small figurines made of faience. These faience models portray a broad range of animals taken both from the wild fauna and from the domestic environment, including also a limited range of human and inanimate figures. The talk aims at exploring the archaeological contexts and the assemblages of objects in which these figurines were found. The spread of late Middle Kingdom figurines in regions outside Egypt, like Nubia (Aniba, Kerma) and the Levant (Beirut, Byblos, Qatna), and in the following period (Second Intermediate Period, 1650–1550 BC) allows to analyse more in detail the processes of material entanglement of artifact identities: a. material appropriation; b. incorporation and tinkering; and c. hybridization, when there is the generation of a product with a new ontological meaning, reinterpreted on a local background.