Treasures of Moravia – Story Of the Historical Land
exhibitionLocation: National Museum’s new building, Vinohradská 1, 110 00, Praha 1
The exhibition shows the historical and cultural context of the territory of Moravia. The phenomenon of Moravia is dealt with in a chronological line in a sophisticated museum presentation as well as in less traditional ways. The exhibition shows life in Moravia from the prehistory (collection items of 800 000 years) through Middle Ages till modern times that present Moravia as a country of freedom, faith, science and arts. The contribution of the country to the national heritage is also outlined. The Moravian Museum is the second largest and in the same time the second oldest museum institution in the Czech Republic. With its extensive collections (over 6 million items) it can be compared only to the National Museum Prague. Besides collecting, exhibiting and educational activities it is a top-level scientific institution ranking among research institutes financed by the Czech Ministry of Culture. The exhibition is based on collection items of the Moravian Museum (many of them are exhibited for the very first time or after a long period in storerooms). Nevertheless, a co-operation has been established with several partners such as the National Heritage Institute, the Moravian Gallery, the Institute of Archaeological Heritage Brno, the Moravian Provincial Library, Brno City Archive, the Archaeological Institute of Czech Academy of Sciences, the National Theatre Brno, regional and district museums, etc. There are 2 337 exhibits on display the majority of which (2 203 items) from the collections of the Moravian Museum. The presentation of Moravian regions through selected collection items coming from regional museums is part of the exhibition. Symbol of the exhibition is a mysterious statuette of a shaman whose age is approximately the same as that of the Venus of Věstonice, i.e. some 25 000 years. Representations of males are very rare in that period, nearly unique. The statuette was found in Brno, in Francouzská Street during sewerage digging in 1891. Together with the skeleton of a man further objects have been discovered in the grave allowing the interpretation of the complex as a sepulchre of a shaman. The statuette of a man is carved in mammoth ivory and consists of three parts – the head, the trunk and the left arm. The head and the trunk are drilled lengthways, so that they may have been connected initially. The left arm had probably been connected to the body too for it ends with a flat surface fitting to a similar surface on the trunk. The statuette probably had legs. A flat surface with a hole on the right bottom of the trunk bears witness of it. In the lower part of the trunk, the male sex is clearly built. The statuette is probably the oldest known figurine composed of several parts – a marionette.