International conference at Freie Universität Berlin

Ancient West Asian Seals and Sealings:
Ongoing Projects, Current Research, Digital Practice

Date: July 24-26, 2023
Conference venue: Fachbereich Geschichts- und Kulturwissenschaften der Freien Universität Berlin, Fabeckstr. 23-25, Raum -1.2009
Organization and contact: E. Roßberger and the ACAWAI-CS team at FU Berlin.
Funding: The conference received funding from the Bundesministerium für Forschung und Bildung (BMBF) and Freie Universität Berlin International (Mittel der FU Berlin zur Internationalisierung).
Attendance was free and open to everybody interested in ancient West Asian seals and sealings. The conference was streamed online via Webex.

Thanks to all speakers and participants for three stimulating days of presentations and discussions! And thanks for joining us from all over the world. We learned a lot and look forward to future cooperations!
Elisa Roßberger, Anna Kurmangaliev, M. Andrea Valsecchi Gillmeister

West Asian Seals Conference Group picVirtual attendance by country





Conference Program

Monday, 24.07.2023: Ongoing Projects
14:00    Elisa Roßberger (FU Berlin): Welcome
14:10    Elisa Roßberger, Anna Kurmangaliev & M. Andrea Valsecchi Gillmeister: Three years of work on the ‘Annotated Corpus of Ancient West Asian Imagery: Cylinder Seals’
14:45    Christoph Uehlinger (Universität Zürich): Stamp Seals from the Southern Levant: A progress report five months before closure—and thinking ahead
15:15    Ariane Thomas (Louvre Paris): A review and prospects on the Louvre's ancient Near Eastern glyptic collection

16:15    Agnete Lassen & Elizabeth Knott (Yale Babylonian Collection; presenting remotely): Update on seal digitization efforts at the Yale Babylonian Collection
16:45    Laurie Pearce (UC Berkeley) & Ron Wallenfels (New York University; both presenting remotely): 1) Achieving text and image integration: HBTIN and AUWE 19 2.0; 2) On the reuse of seals in the Hellenistic Near East
17:15    Jacob Dahl (Oxford; presenting remotely): Recent advances in the capture, storage, and dissemination of images and metadata of cylinder seals in the CDLI

17:45    Oya Topçuoğlu (Northwestern University Chicago; presenting remotely): Going once, going twice, sold! The online market in Mesopotamian cylinder seals
18:15    Dominik Bonatz (FU Berlin):  The Imagery of Middle Assyrian Seals: A Semiotic Approach

Tuesday, 25.07.2023: Current Research
09:00    Clélia Paladre (Louvre Paris): Revisiting the Proto-Elamite phenomenon and its glyptic productions
09:30    Adelheid Otto (LMU München): More fragments of officialdom from Fara: The 2022 sealings from the Early Dynastic II 'Seal Pit'
10:00    Rudi Mayr (New York): Servant seals of the Akkadian and Neo-Sumerian periods: Typology and terminology

11:00  Katrien de Graef (Ghent University): Personal seals and sealing persons. Identifying seals, their owners and users on Old Babylonian Sippar tablets  
11:30    Zsombor Földi (LMU München): Seal inscriptions written on clay tablets: Drafts or something else?
12:00    Elena Devecchi (University of Turin):  Sharing seals in Kassite Babylonia: Some case-studies

14:00    Zena Awad (LMU München): The representation of the figure of the 'Suppliant Goddess' on Syrian cylinder seals in the second millennium B.C.: A new perspective
14:30    Nedal Haj Darwich (London): Hybrid beings in the glyptic of Syria, Upper Mesopotamia and Assyria in the Late Bronze Age
15:00    Diana Stein (Birkbeck London): Mittanian glyptic by any other name
15:30    Marta Luciani (Universität Wien): The Nuzi bullae collection at the Harvard Museum of the Ancient Near East: Report on current research

16:15    Ruben Davtyan (Universität Halle): Mitanni seals in South Caucasus: Image and context
16:30    Zoltan Niederreiter (ELTE Budapest): A particular group of Neo-Assyrian cylinder seals
17:00    Tiffany Ftaimi (Universität Heidelberg): Insights into heaven: Deities and ritual scenes in the Iron Age
17:30     Vanessa Boschloos (Ghent University): Levantine and Egyptian stamp seals in Byblos: current research

Wednesday, 26.07.2023: Digital Practice
09:00    Albert Dietz (LMU München): Is old school still the best school? Analysing picture elements in Western Asian seal research the traditional way
09:30    Alessandro di Ludovico & Sergio Camiz (Rome): Attempt to optimise information through quantitative study of a small glyptic dataset
10:00    Silvana di Paolo (CNR Rome): Image recognition tools and seals: Seeking knowledge and meaning

11:00    Yvonne Helmholz (FU Berlin): Sealing practices in Archaic Uruk: 3-D-modeling of a broken context
11:30    Hubert Mara (Universität Halle): 3D Forensic for seal imprints and clay tablets
12:00   Martina Trognitz (ÖAW Wien): Links everywhere: Linked Open Data for Aegean seals with Wikidata
Followed by roundtable discussion, lunch, and closure.
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FU Berlin International

Seal impression on clay fragment from Ur.
Photo: A. Otto; graphic rendering: A. Dietz.


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