An open air touring exhibition on the theme of Ice Age Europe was inaugurated today by Minister for Education, Heritage, the Environment and Climate Change, John Cortes, at the Commonwealth Park where it will remain on display for public viewing until the end of May before continuing its European tour at the Préhistomuseum in Belgium.
A spokesperson said: "Ice Age Europe is a network of heritage sites that tell the story of Ice Age people in Europe and our Pleistocene cultural heritage in space and time. The Ice Age is one of the most fascinating periods in early human history.
"The foundations of our culture today were established during more than two million years of Ice Age history; its relicts are among the key testimonies of our cultural heritage and of human development.
"Today the network represents 20 archaeological sites, research institutions and their affiliated museums or visitor centres across 8 European countries. The sites, among them many World Heritage Sites, attract close to 2 million visitors a year.
"The Gibraltar National Museum is a founding member of the Ice Age Europe network of heritage sites. The museum’s brief includes research at the Gorham’s Cave Complex where it carries out ongoing archaeological excavations. Gorham’s Cave was inscribed in the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites in 2016. The visit of the exhibition is the result of the Gibraltar National Museum’s direct involvement in the network.
"The #IceAgeEuropeNow exhibition presents large-format photographs of fascinating finds, extraordinary objects and surprising connections between past and present from over 15 selected locations across Europe. The photographs invite the audience to experience a shared cultural heritage and common European roots whilst learning how our Ice Age heritage is still present today. The Gibraltar National Museum and Gorham’s Cave Complex have contributed to photographs of a moonrise at Gorham’s Cave and of the forensic reconstruction of the first Neanderthal fossil discovered in Gibraltar, now known as Nana.
"The exhibition was a contribution to the European Year of Cultural Heritage “Sharing Heritage” 2018 and has been made possible with the support of the Ministry for Federal Affairs, Europe and the Media of North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany, and CEWE Stiftung & Co. KGaA. As a European-wide leading photography service, CEWE is traditionally linked with the cultural heritage of photography and sees it as their responsibility to promote it. The company supports well-known projects and institutions with knowledge and technology. The exhibition’s European tour began in April 2017 following its launch at the Neanderthal Museum in Mettmann, Germany. From there it has travelled to Croatia, Italy, France, Spain and now Gibraltar."
The public is encouraged to join in the conversation about ‘Europe then and now’ by contributing ideas, thoughts and photographs using the #IceAgeEuropeNow hashtag on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.