Freer and Sackler Lecture: Enduring Images: Repetition of Motifs in Ancient Near Eastern Seals

Lizzie Stein's picture
Type: 
Lecture
Date: 
March 9, 2021
Subject Fields: 
Ancient History, Archaeology, Art, Art History & Visual Studies

Please join us on Tuesday, March 9, 12–12:40 pm for our monthly series Sneak Peek: New Research from the Freer and Sackler. This month's lecture, Enduring Images: Repetition of Motifs in Ancient Near Eastern Seals, will be presented by Antonietta Catanzariti, Robert and Arlene Kogod Secretarial Scholar and Assistant Curator for the Ancient Near East at the Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, the Smithsonian's National Museum of Asian Art.

 

Small in size but rich in iconography, seals were in use for millennia throughout the ancient Near East. Known mainly as administrative tools, seals had many other functions. Today, seals are a valuable source of information on the social practices of the ancient Near East. In this talk, assistant curator Antonietta Catanzariti will discuss a little-studied, small group of ancient Near Eastern seals from the Smithsonian Institution’s collection to explore the role that iconographic images took when engraved on seals. She will specifically speak about her research to understand the motifs that were engraved on seals and that persisted over time. Indeed, seals were known for their mobile nature and thus, the images engraved upon them were prone to travel. As repeated images, these motifs took on an agency that evolved over time, transferring with them messages or agendas. 
 
Antonietta Catanzariti was appointed the Robert and Arlene Kogod Secretarial Scholar, assistant curator for the ancient Near East, at the Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of Asian Art, in 2018. She received her BA and MA from Ca’ Foscari University, in Venice, Italy, and a PhD in the art and archaeology of the ancient Near East from the University of California, Berkeley. She is an active archaeologist and has excavated in Italy, Jordan, Syria, Lebanon, and Iraqi Kurdistan. Since 2015, she has been the director of the Qara Dagh Regional Archaeological Project (QDRAP), which conducts surveys and excavations in the Qara Dagh Valley, Iraqi Kurdistan.
 
A specialist in the ceramic economy and archaeology of the ancient Near East, Catanzariti is also interested in the impact of landscape and trade routes on the formation and interactions of ancient communities. Catanzariti has lectured on topics related to the ancient Near East’s ceramic economy and her excavation projects.

 

This talk is part of our monthly series Sneak Peek: New Research from the Freer and Sackler. Join us as museum staff members present in-depth, personal perspectives and discuss ongoing research connected to works in the Freer and Sackler collections. This brief lunchtime talk series will introduce original, unpublished, and developing ideas, followed by robust discussion. Sneak Peek: New Research from the Freer and Sackler will take place at noon on the second Tuesday of each month through June. 

  

Register here: https://smithsonian.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_qaiRlXGBT_OVhlY5PHaTTA

Find more information here: https://asia.si.edu/events-overview/talks/?trumbaEmbed=view%3Dseries%26seriesid%3D1562425 

Contact Info: 

Lizzie Stein, Scholarly Programs and Publications Specialist

Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery, The Smithsonian's National Museum of Asian Art