Institute for the Study of the Ancient World
15 E. 84th Street
New York, NY 10028
Temple and Tomb examines the art, architecture and culture of an astonishingly forward-thinking people who lived in Malta, an island group in the Southern Mediterranean, over five thousand years ago. It is the first exhibition ever to display Maltese prehistoric art in the U.S.—many of the objects on display have never before left Malta.
Malta is famous for temples believed to be the oldest freestanding stone buildings in the world—built from stones weighing up to 20 tons each and quarried using only stone and wooden tools. The exhibition examines these extraordinary structures through historic drawings, watercolors and photographs, as well as two video installations. More than 60 archeological finds are on view, including incredibly detailed and varied representations of the human figure, decorative architectural reliefs, refined clay vessels, and imported stone amulets, drawn from the collections of the National Museum of Archaeology and the Gozo Museum of Archaeology. These spectacular objects were found in temple and tomb contexts and tell us about the life and death concerns of these people from the dawn of human history.
Temple and Tomb: Prehistoric Malta 3600–2500 BCE has been organized by the Institute for the Study of the Ancient World at New York University (ISAW) in collaboration with Heritage Malta. The exhibition and its accompanying publication were made possible through the support of the Leon Levy Foundation.