Large Celtic shield from Iron Age Britain.

Pattern and playfulness: Celtic art in Iron Age Britain

Lectures & discussions / Members' exclusive / 20 Apr 2020

Age: 16+

Event information

20 Apr 2020


BP Lecture Theatre

British Museum, Great Russell Street,

London, WC1B 3DG


  • £15


Some of the most famous and best-studied objects from ancient Britain are ornately decorated Iron Age gold torcs, and bronze shields, mirrors, and sword scabbards.

Join curator Dr Julia Farley as she explores the swirling Celtic art designs which decorate and empower these objects. This was a world of shape-shifting creatures, and hidden faces and beasts. Also tucked in amongst the designs are references to a much more neglected set of material: textiles and other organics. Decorated metalwork often includes details such as pseudo-stitching, twisting, or textures that mimic woven cloth. Remembering and rediscovering the organic materials that were once used alongside these objects (such as clothing, wood, leather and horse hair) allows us to see them in a new and different light.

This lecture includes a complimentary drink.