A Viking Life

The international exhibition A Viking Life is one of the standout projects in the 2024 programming of the Cidade da Cultura. It comprises around 120 pieces, with about a hundred coming from outside Spain and belonging to renowned history and archaeology museums in Europe focusing on Viking culture, including four national museums and a national library. The exhibition is curated by Dr. Irene García Losquiño, a scholar with a Ph.D. in Scandinavian Studies from the University of Aberdeen, specializing in the Viking Age.

Through a wide array of historical and archaeological objects, the exhibition delves into Nordic culture during the Viking Age (from the second half of the 8th century to the second half of the 11th century). Seeking to move beyond preconceptions and stereotypes from popular culture, it will showcase aspects such as the involvement of women in war and exploration campaigns. Additionally, it will focus on Viking culture beyond Scandinavia, exploring its interactions with other peoples and lands, including violent exchanges and conquests, as well as settlements and the establishment of trade relations.

The narrative of the exhibition is structured around the life of an individual during the Viking Age: from birth, childhood, youth, and maturity to after death. This approach allows for an understanding of this civilization from a varied and very human perspective, employing an innovative focus that combines events from different decades and centuries within the temporal framework of "one life".

'Galicia and the vikings'

The exhibition discourse will delve into various contact locations of this civilization in the diaspora, including Galicia. The force of Viking expansion reached the Galician shores with the same vigor it had in other parts of the world. Despite not being a territory massively settled by Vikings, several centuries of continuous visits left their mark, especially in areas like the Ría de Arousa or the banks of the Ulla River.

In Galicia, we find examples of both continued violent contact and medium-term settlement in the form of camps, as well as places where strong alliances and commercial relationships were forged. Delving into this civilization also means delving into our past and gaining a better understanding of a part of our history.

Prominent Museums from four countries 

  • SWEDEN: Statens Historiska Museet —National Museum of History— and Ekonomiska Museet (Estocolmo); Sigtuna Museum (Sigtuna); The Gotland Museum (Gotland)
  • DENMARK: Nationalmuseet i København —National Museum of Denmark—, (Copenhague)
  • FRANCE: Musée d'Archéologie Nationale et Domaine National de Saint-Germain-en-Laye (Yvelines)
  • SPAIN: Museo Arqueológico Nacional, Biblioteca Nacional de España, Real Academia de la Historia (Madrid); Museo de Pontevedra; Museo de las Peregrinaciones y de Santiago; Diócesis de Mondoñedo
  • [+ Shane McLeod Collection]

Curator

Irene García Losquiño (Elche, 1984) | Doctor in Scandinavian Studies and Master in Medieval Studies from the University of Aberdeen, she is a researcher and specialist in the Viking Age. She has led interdisciplinary projects focusing on the Viking presence on the Iberian Peninsula in comparison with other areas such as England or Normandy. She served as a university professor and researcher in Spanish, Swedish, American, and Scottish institutions. Her work has been recognized with awards from the Royal Academy Gustavus Adolphus of Sweden. She participated in the documentary Real Vikings, produced by the team behind the successful TV drama Vikings. Currently, she works as a researcher at the Interuniversity Research Center for Atlantic Cultural Landscapes (CISPAC).

Scientific Advisory Committee

  • Neil Price: Distinguished Professor of Archaeology at the University of Uppsala. Specializes in funerary customs, military campaigns, gender, and religion in the Viking Age.
  • Charlotte Hedenstierna-Jonson: Senior Researcher in The Viking Phenomenon project at the University of Uppsala and the Swedish History Museum. Specializes in material culture, martial aspects, economy, mobility, and gender in the Viking Age.
  • Alexandra Sanmark: Professor of Medieval Archaeology at the Institute of Northern Studies, University of Highlands and Islands. Specializes in legal practices, Christianization, and gender in the Viking Age.
  • Declan Taggart: PhD from the School of Scandinavian Studies at the University of Aberdeen. Postdoctoral researcher at Háskóli Islands, working on moral norms, religion, and social structure in pre-Christian Iceland and Scandinavia.
  • Stefan Brink: PhD in Scandinavian Philology (Uppsala, 1990). Former professor of 6th-century Scandinavian Studies at the University of Aberdeen and director of the Center for Scandinavian Studies.
  • Rosa M. Rodríguez Porto: Ramón y Cajal Researcher at the University of Santiago de Compostela. Specializes in Medieval Art History, manuscripts, and Scando-Iberian artistic influences in the Middle Ages.
  • Inés García López: Researcher at the Rovira i Virgili University. Specializes in Nordic literature, Old Norse, reception, and gender; translator of Icelandic sagas and skaldic poetry.
  • José Carlos Sánchez Pardo: Associate Professor of Archaeology at the University of Santiago de Compostela. Specializes in the archaeology of the Galician and European medieval landscape, with expertise in Viking themes.
  • Manuel Gago Mariño: Cultural journalist, professor at the University of Santiago de Compostela, and exhibition curator. Specializes in technology and the dissemination of national heritage.
 
Exhibitions
 
5 Dec 2023 - 19 May 2024
22 March — 4 August 2024
Tuesday to Sunday | 10 a.m. — 8 p.m.