The Iberian Peninsula (today's Spain and Portugal) was inhabited in the 1st millennium BC by numerous peoples of different origins. The west and centre of the peninsula was settled by Celts, while the south (today's Andalusia) and the whole of the east coast, as far north as Languedoc in southern France, was occupied by a variety of tribes nowadays referred to collectively as "Iberians." At the intersection between the Mediterranean Sea and the Atlantic Ocean, where indigenous traditions encountered external influences from the Orient, a fascinating culture developed between the 6th and 1st centuries BC.
This special exhibition at the Antikenmuseum Basel, conceived in cooperation with the Museu d’Arqueologia de Catalunya, is dedicated to the culture and art of the Iberians. Around 260 exhibits illustrate the diversity of this Iron Age culture. Of particular importance is that many of these objects have never been seen outside of Spain until now. As Switzerland rescued and protected these precious artifacts during the Spanish civil war, returning them all to Spain intact after the war ended, the government of Spain has made a special exception to allow these national treasures to be a part of this very special exhibit in Basel. A 6-min film towards the end of the exhibition provides the visitor with a realistic look at how the objects on exhibit were used in everyday life.
In addition to audio guides available in four languages including English, the entrance ticket also includes a booklet in five languages (including English) that contains all of the text from the exhibition; look for the corresponding characters from the—as yet undeciphered—Iberian language! Children attending the exhibit will be given a parkour map where they will have to search for the hidden wolves—an animal of great significance to the Iberian culture—throughout the exhibition.
St. Alban-Graben 5