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The Eternity Code: Archaeology, Textiles and Preservation

Date Jun 11, 2014 - Sep 21, 2014
Curated by Shauna McCabe, Natalia Nekrassova, Roxane Shaughnessy and Sarah Quinton

Exhibition Overview

How have textiles – among the most fragile and vulnerable artifacts – survived over centuries? Learn about the materials and techniques found in archaeological textiles and the conditions that have allowed for their survival through this exhibition of Peruvian and Coptic textiles from the Textile Museum of Canada collection. Woven cloth, basketry, cordage and matting have been integral to every culture and every historical moment – Paleolithic to contemporary – providing direct evidence of social, political, and economic conditions over time and space. The Eternity Code explores early textile technologies and their roles in symbolic communication through ciphers, signs and patterns as well as their social functions in ceremony, ritual and everyday life.

Additional Information

By their very nature, archaeological fibres are among the most fragile, extremely sensitive to environmental conditions. In 2013, the Textile Museum of Canada began research and development of new approaches to the conservation and storage of archaeological textiles to ensure enduring access to valuable artifacts of global heritage for future generations. Innovations introduced into the exhibition demonstrate the science of conservation as well as state-of-the-art advances in archaeological textile storage developed by the Textile Museum of Canada to provide the essential care and security of some of the most valuable and cryptic of human evidence.

Curated by Shauna McCabe, Natalia Nekrassova, Roxane Shaughnessy and Sarah Quinton and organized by the Textile Museum of Canada. Archaeological storage upgrades undertaken with the support of the Museums Assistance Program of the Department of Canadian Heritage.

<i>Fragment de panneau de pèlerine</i>, Pérou, XIVe au XVIe siècle
Fragment, Peru, Pre-Spanish, Late Intermediate Period (1000-1476), T84.0285
Roundel, Egypt, 600 - 799
Tunic, Egypt, 600-899, T88.0057