The collection at London’s British Museum is one of the best in the world. Spanning more than two million years of human history, the Museum’s extensive collection is a tour de force through time.
Now, you do not need to plan a trip to Russell Square to view this collection – well, at least part of it. At Treasures of the World from the British Museum, a small treasure trove of the British Museum’s immense collection is here in Singapore from now till May 2016.
British Museum’s Treasure of the World
Treasures of the World, located at the basement gallery of the National Museum of Singapore, presents a broad selection of artefacts from the revered British Museum. These objects come from all over the globe and provide a window to Africa, The Americas, Europe, Middle East, Asia, Oceania and The Modern World through seven galleries.
Each item on display is well presented and accompanied by titles that provide interesting insights to their origin and purpose.
The British Museum is well known for its Egyptian collection. It is fitting that one of the first galleries visitors will be drawn to is the Africa gallery. Here, get a glimpse of the ancient Egyptian world through objects that include statues, objects used for mummification, a mummy and other antiquities. Other African cultures are also represented here.
The remainder of the galleries are similarly filled with objects – some used in everyday life and many of significance and used for ceremonial purposes.
It is mesmerizing to imagine the stories behind an ivory knife scrimshawed with hunting scenes, an ornate box inlaid with medieval scenes of courtship and a Welsh round shield hanging on display. The oldest artifact at the exhibition is a stone handaxe that is about 800,000 years old. With a bit of imagination, each object provides a portal to a distant land and a different time.
Closer to home, Treasures of the World from the British Museum includes items accumulated by Sir Stamford Raffles from the region. These include a Javanese mask and a kris.
The exhibition includes two Young Explorers’ Zones for children between the ages of four to 12.
At the first, activity cards encourage young ones to explore the galleries for highlighted items and engage curious minds with open-ended questions. Kids can also pick up a pencil and make wood-rubbings to bring home.
At the second zone, children can arm themselves with a pocket microscope and explore the geology of rocks and minerals. Kids who play Minecraft will be interested to inspect a piece of REAL obsidian here.
Seats placed around the galleries invite visitors can sit, linger and learn more about the cultures and history of each region. Also, keep an eye out for little explorer activity sheets that kids can use to guide themselves around the exhibition.
On the National Museum of Singapore’s website, there are educational resources for educators and school-going children available for download.
Treasures of the World from The British Museum is now at the National Museum of Singapore till May 2016. Head down to the exhibition to experience a whirlwind trip around the world without leaving our shores.
TREASURES OF THE WORLD FROM THE BRITISH MUSEUM
5 December 2015 to 29 May 2016
10 am to 7 pm
National Museum of Singapore, Basement Gallery
Adults – Citizens & PRs: $14; Non-Citizens & Non-PRs: $20
Students – Citizens & PRs: FREE; Non-Citizens & Non-PRs: $16|
Seniors – Citizens & PRs: FREE; Non-Citizens & Non-PRs: $20
Teachers – FREE
Children six years old and below – FREE
Return visits – Citizens & PRs: $10; Non-Citizens & Non-PRs: $16