Did you know that the Museum has a conservation studio just for East Asian paintings? The Hirayama Studio opened in 1994 and continues to use traditional techniques to preserve, protect and display these amazing works. Here, intern Matthias Sotiras writes about his five months spent in this unique work environment.
24 May 2017
3 May 2017
We’re celebrating two decades of the Portable Antiquities Scheme – the organisation recording archaeological finds in England and Wales – with our new Treasure 20 campaign. Treasure Registrar Ian Richardson introduces the project and outlines how you can vote for your favourite dazzling discovery from the last 20 years!
18 April 2017
Museum Archivist Francesca Hillier explains how the collection got too big for one institution, and why you won’t find dinosaurs in Bloomsbury.
24 March 2017
Inspiration for Indiana Jones? No, not our curator Jago Cooper, but Colonel Percy Fawcett, whose incredible true story is now told through a new film, The Lost City of Z. Curators Jago Cooper and Kate Jarvis take a look at some of the objects associated with his expeditions to the Amazon.
15 March 2017
How do you capture the ancient resonances of phrases that mean nothing to modern audiences? How do you invest them with meaning and emotion without a set of explanatory footnotes that kill all spontaneity? Oxford University professor Richard Bruce Parkinson worked with actress and writer Barbara Ewing to record a dramatic reading of one of the finest works of Egyptian poetry The Tale of Sinuhe.
8 March 2017
Did you know that the word ‘museum’ literally means a temple to the muses, all of whom were female (albeit allegorical)? This International Women’s Day, take a look at some of the very real women represented in the Museum’s collection today. Your guides are some of the many women curators who are continuing to tell these important stories to the world.
2 March 2017
For World Book Day, we’re celebrating all things literary. From some of the earliest writing from 5,000 years ago to our favourite fiction, discover the different ways people around the world have shared ideas through books in their many forms!
14 February 2017
The Beatles sang ‘All you need is love’. Curator Lloyd de Beer isn’t convinced. There’s also room for lust and sex, apparently…
28 January 2017
Happy Chinese New Year 2017! Today millions of people across the world are preparing to gather with family, get out the firecrackers and celebrate the Spring Festival. Here’s a handy guide to the most anticipated event in the Chinese calendar – from the origins of the Chinese zodiac to the traditions and the superstitions surrounding the celebrations. May the Year of the Rooster be prosperous and happy for you – Gong Xi Fa Cai!
26 January 2017
As the year of the rooster approaches, the Chinese scroll mounters in the Hirayama Studio have plenty to crow about…
14 January 2017
You may think you know the British Museum, but there’s always more to discover. Here, we highlight a few secrets to delight and surprise even the most enthusiastic Museum fan. Never afraid to jump on a bandwagon, we’ve compiled a handy listicle of some of the weird and wonderful facts that make the British Museum unique. Maybe you knew it all already? If you did, you probably work here already…
13 January 2017
Chris Michaels, Head of Digital and Publishing, introduces our refreshed British Museum blog, and discusses the role of the blog as part of our digital strategy.
23 August 2016
Nick Harris, Digital Creative Producer chats with Curator of Modern Money, Tom Hockenhull, and Museum Historian, Marjorie Caygill, about how the Museum dealt with the threat from German bombers during the Blitz.
27 August 2015
Amelia Dowler discusses the mystery of the Fetter Lane hoard, and how coins minted in Alexandria, Egypt between AD 58 and AD 284 ended up in Roman Britannia.
8 December 2014
Carole Weiss and Jin Xian Qiu reveal the work that took place behind the scenes in the Hirayama Studio to prepare a Ming dynasty silk painting by artist Zhu Bang to go on display.
5 December 2014
To celebrate the 250th anniversary of the State Hermitage Museum in St Petersburg, the British Museum loaned the sculpture of the river-god Ilissos from the West pediment of the Parthenon. Neil MacGregor, Director of The British Museum shares some of the history of the long standing friendship between the first great museums of the European Enlightenment.
19 November 2014
Computer 3D technology is being increasingly adopted in museums to aid with conservation, curatorial research and interpretation. Here Matthew Cock explains how scans of the British Museum’s collection of Assyrian reliefs take by a team CyArk provide a fantastic resource that we can use to help people better understand and engage with these objects.
6 November 2014
Clarissa von Spee explains the significance of German expressionist sculptor Ernst Barlach’s most important work, Der Schwebende (The Hovering), and how the work managed to survive the First World War. On display as part of the exhibition Germany: memories of a nation, 16 October 2014 to 25 January 2015.
31 July 2014
Colourful beads for collars and wigs or earrings? Anna Hodgkinson has been updating over 200 of the Collections online record of items of glass jewellery from the New Kingdom in the Department of Ancient Egypt and Sudan.
26 June 2014
Due to the nature of human remains from ancient Egypt and Nubia, evidence for tattooing is scarce. However in the Ancient lives, new discoveries exhibition, one of the mummies on display is so well preserved the British Museum has located a tattoo and other marks on her skin. Marie Vandenbeusch discusses the significance of this discovery.
2 June 2014
Amandine Mérat and Emily Taylor have been working on reordering the Museum’s Egyptian textiles collection not by provenance or date but by technique. By conducting a close visual examination of technique, and drawing on knowledge of their cultural background, they hope to determine the possible original function of many of the textiles.
4 April 2014
Martin Findell is a Research Associate at the University of Leicester. He is particularly interested in the problems of understanding the relationship between spelling and sound change in the early Germanic languages, and in the uses and abuses of runes in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. In this blog Martin discusses some of the runic writing on display in Vikings: life and legend.
7 February 2014
In May 2013 a team of scientists led by the British Museum, Natural History Museum and Queen Mary University of London discovered a series of footprints left by early humans in ancient estuary mud over 800,000 years ago at Happisburgh, Norfolk. Nicholas Ashton, Curator of Palaeolithic and Mesolithic collections at the British Museum has been working on the Happisburgh Palaeolithic excavations.
30 July 2013
In the next blog by Sally Grainger, chef and author of The Classical Cookbook, Sally experiments with cooking in replica of a clibanus oven.
9 July 2013
Jago Cooper has just returned from an exploratory research visit to the uninhabited national park on the island of Mona in Puerto Rico. In this blog, Jago details his findings which were rather unexpected.
16 November 2012
This year, British Museum curators have collaborated with scientists and medical experts to perform a CT scan of a naturally-preserved mummy know as the Gebelein Man. Detailed images created from the scans’ high resolution X-rays allow us to look inside his body and learn about his life – and death – in ways never before possible. Daniel Antoine tells us what we have been able to discover about the Gebelein Man.
10 January 2012
The Hallaton helmet was shown in public today for the first time since it was buried 2,000 years ago. JD Hill reveals to us the significance of this discovery and the work behind the scenes that has led up to its display.
17 August 2011
With Grayson Perry: The Tomb of the Unknown Craftsman opening in two months, the British Museum has asked contributors from the craft world to share their thoughts on the importance of craft today. First up is Teleri Lloyd-Jones is Assistant Editor of Crafts Magazine. Crafts is an editorially independent bi-monthly magazine published by the Crafts Council, the national development agency for contemporary craft in the UK.