Collection Highlights: Antiquities
White marble figurine
Cycladic, H: 32 cm. From the Cycladic island of Amorgos in the Aegean Sea. ‘Early Cycladic’ (about 3000–2000 BC). AN1896-1908.AE.178.
Many such figurines have been found in tombs on Amorgos, Naxos, Melos and other Cycladic islands of the Aegean. They are now frequently called ‘idols', but their true original function is wholly unknown. The existence of similar figurines in Early Bronze Age Anatolia, Crete and Egypt witnesses to the close contact of the inhabitants of the silver-rich Cyclades with other important centres in the eastern Mediterranean, and their role as pioneers of sea-borne trade. Modern appreciation of Cycladic art owes much to the interest shown in primitive art by such 20th century artists as Picasso and Brancusi.
Aegean World (Gallery 20), Ground Floor, Case D104