Zooming in on African Ivory

Monday 22 May, 12.30 

Ashley Coutu

With Dr Ashley Coutu, Research Curator (African Archaeology) & Deputy Head of Research

In this spotlight talk, Ashley will talk about the different ways to study historic and archaeological African ivories, such as a technique she uses called ZooMS, which allows us to identify the animal species, and other scientific tools such as ancient DNA which enable us to determine where an ivory object originated. She will talk about how this relates to modern debates around illegal ivory trade and wildlife conservation, while also highlighting the evidence for the art and craft of ivory production in the last 2,000 years across the African continent. Join Ashley to hear about her latest work, handle ivory objects, and meet the elephants in the room...

Part of our Research Spotlights series

On the last Monday of the month join Pitt Rivers Museum researchers in the galleries for interactive talks bringing cutting-edge, cross-disciplinary research to life. In 2023, connect with objects and images from the collections and get to know the work of visual and evolutionary anthropologists, curatorial activists, health-care researchers and many other specialists who are accessing the museum to take their research in new directions and to connect with new people.  

Where: Meet underneath the Star House Crest Pole (Haida Totem Pole) in the Museum’s Court for talks to start at 12.30.  

Who: All are welcome to attend, from families to museum aficionados!  

Accessibility: Talks will be wheelchair accessible, may involve material that can be handled and we can provide follow-up info over email for visitors.      


Is there a particular aspect of the Pitt Rivers’ works that you want to hear more about?  Tweet us to let us know @Pitt_Rivers #PRMResearchSpotlight