ASHLAR. Exploring the materiality of cut stone masonry in the Eastern Mediterranean Bronze Age -08-0
Invited speakers: Jean-Claude Bessac, Nicholas Blackwell, Kevin Fisher, Ömür Harmanşah, Valérie Matoïan, Joseph Shaw, and James Wright.
Cut stone masonry is one of the most prominent features that characterises monumental architecture, the appearance of which is imbued with symbolic meaning and corollary to wholesale changes in the societies of the Bronze Age Eastern Mediterranean (Harmanşah 2007; Knapp 2009; Broodbank 2013; Fisher 2014). Ashlar walls and orthostat lining indeed mark a considerable increase in energy investment in architecture, as well as the mobilisation of a large and skilled workforce necessary for its construction in the 3rd and 2nd millennium BC Aegean, Anatolia, Cyprus, Egypt, Syria and Levant. Seen against the backdrop of long-distance interactions that connect these regions from the 3rd millennium onwards and which intensify throughout the Bronze Age, the extensive use of cut stone in the Bronze Age Eastern Mediterranean is taken as one of the main indications of knowledge transfer within the region. The precise form of this transfer remains unclear, however. Although hints at shared building practices between different areas are suggested on the basis of similarities in the tool kits, extraction methods or general structural and formal features (Hult 1983; Wright 1985; Küpper 1996; Palyvou 2005, 2009; Seeher 2008; Shaw 2009; Bachmann 2009; Phylokyprou 2013; Blackwell 2014), no obvious filiation between cut stones building techniques can be traced. Furthermore, detailed technical case-studies, the prerequisite for any comparative study, are few.
LUGAR/LOCATION/LUOGO: UCLouvain (Louvain-la-Neuve, Belgium)
ORGANIZADOR/ORGANIZER/ORGANIZZATORE: Maud Devolder; Igor Kreimerman; Jan Driessen