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In “a once-in-a-century discovery,” archaeologists excavating in the Caucasus Mountains of Russia have discovered two intact, solid gold vessels used by the Scythians, an ancient nomadic people who ruled parts of Eurasia between the 9th century BCE and 4th century CE. The vessels, which date back 2,400 years, were found in a large grave mound along with gold cups, rings, necklaces, and bracelet — and they were used for drugs.
On the gold vessels at the time of their unearthing was a black residue, which the archaeologists asked some criminologists to analyze. They found traces of cannabis and opium, seemingly confirming a practice that was written about by Greek historian Herodotus: “the Scythians used a plant to produce smoke ‘that no Grecian vapour-bath can surpass … transported by the vapor, [they] shout aloud.’”
The Scythians, in other words, got really high before going off to fight. The opium must have helped them stay focused, while the marijuana assuaged those pre-battle jitters. And that means these solid gold vessels might be the world’s earliest known … well, I wouldn’t quite call them bongs, but each one certainly resembles a high-art pot.
The University of Virginia researchers wrote that the data “provides compelling evidence that these symbols are associated with hate.”
We are waiting for spectacle and when the quotidian, yet incongruous actions occur I wonder whether there is any real payoff coming.
Hear from Holly Jean Buck, Carolina Caycedo and David de Rozas, Simon Denny, Elizabeth Hoover, Renee Kemp-Rotan, Joseph Kunkel, and more at this free public event.
Tanega’s approach to mark-making comes across as stream of consciousness, as if she’s engaged in a conversation with herself.
Starting Monday, readers can borrow one of 50 rare and out-of-print titles, mailed to them completely free of charge, from Saint Heron Library.
EFA Open Studios offers a portal into the creative habitats of over 65 artists working in Manhattan’s longest-running studio program, including Dannielle Tegeder, Wafaa Bilal, Cui Fei, and Anina Major.
This is Yuskavage’s great gift, turning upside down our settled ways of thinking and seeing and, with ease, transforming the vulgar and ridiculous into the sublime.
51 international publishers and galleries showcase their latest editions in prints and artists’ books at this free public fair, which is fully online this year.
While hardly about the pandemic, or any of the other crises so afflicting us, all are invoked in this exhibition, which is also often tender and profoundly soulful.
These glowing, dynamic artworks reproduce something of Bosch’s chaotic energy, but on an immersive, multi-sensory scale.
This week, addressing a transphobic comedy special on Netflix, the story behind KKK hoods, cultural identity fraud, an anti-Semitic take on modern art, and more.