The Brandt-Lewis Center for Ancient Jewelry and Artifacts

April 15, 2012

We are delighted and honored to tell you that Diane Carol Brandt and Martin Lewis, great friends and wonderful supporters, agreed to establish the Brandt-Lewis Center for Ancient Jewelry and Artifacts in the Schottenstein National Campus for the Archaeology of Israel.

This generous gift to the Israel Antiquities Authority joins a number of other significant gifts that are uniquely important toward realizing our goal, and together form the cornerstone of our efforts to reach out and educate the public about the  rich and diverse archaeological heritage of the Land of Israel.

The viewable Center for Ancient Jewelry and Artifacts will become a must-see stop for school children, archaeologists and researchers from around the world, visitors to Israel and the general public. When completed, the  National Campus, a Safdie designed 300,000 sq. feet education, research and illumination complex currently under construction in the center of Jerusalem, will provide easy access to the largest collection of the Archaeology of the Land of Israel in the world. The Center for Ancient Jewelry and Artifacts will join a number of other viewable collection centers in the National Campus including: ancient glass, ancient textiles, mosaics, pottery, Dead Sea Scrolls and coins. 

Brandt-Lewis Center for Ancient Jewelry and Artifacts

The Ancient Jewelry and Artifacts Viewable Housing and the Study Display Gallery which make up the Center for Ancient Jewelry and Artifacts are designed to house and showcase all finds that were excavated and will be excavated in the future. The current collections of ancient jewelry and artifacts contain more than 15,000 complete objects and thousands of indicative fragments.

The future Center is designed to be an active and growing facility, able to hold more than 25,000 objects in optimal environmental conditions, providing long shelf life for the objects, as well as easy access for students, researchers, archaeologists and the general public to view, study and research the collections.  

The Collections

The ancient jewelry, seals and artifacts collections of the Israel Antiquities Authority are the only ones of their kind in the world. The remarkable collections provide an overview of various aspects of the material culture in the Land of Israel and include:

7,000 jewelry objects including beads, braceletsearrings, pendants, rings, necklaces, chains, bands, combs and inlays in a wide range of materials: gold, silver, shell, ivory, glass, carnelian and rock crystal.

8,000 objects in pottery, stone, tin, faience and carnelian, including seals,cylindrical sealsbullaescarabs, gems, seal impressions, LMLK handles, rosetta handles, YHD handles, Rhodes handles, and official weights. 

5,000 ritual and religious objects in clay, stone, faience and alabaster, including zoomorphic amuletszoomorphic figurines, zoomorphic small jars, divine figures, semi-divine figures, votive tools, and alabstrons.

2,500 daily life objects in clay, pottery, limestone, basalt, metal, including whorl spindles, toggle pins, grindstones, mortars,  board games, stone dice, and toys.

Our experienced cuators are in charge of all issues relating to the collections and  provide  expertise to archaeologists from Israel and from around the world. Our curators study and publish the finds, and advise on all issues relating to jewelry, seals and artifacts in the collections of the Israel Antiquities Authority.

                                                            

One of the unique and fascinating features of the Brandt-Lewis Center for Ancient Jewelry and Artifacts in the National Campus will be the rare opportunity for the public to view the unique collections in the housing facility and have direct guided access to Israel's National Treasures. This remarkable feature is an important and dramatic example of the IAA's mission to provide increasingly enhanced accessibility to its vast collections.

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