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to Section One | to Arts & Entertainment
posted Friday, February 8, 2019 - Volume 47 Issue 06
Stunning 'The Vikings Begin' exhibition continues at Seattle's Nordic Museum in Ballard
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Stunning 'The Vikings Begin' exhibition continues at Seattle's Nordic Museum in Ballard

NORDIC MUSEUM
'THE VIKINGS BEGIN'
Through April 14


The Nordic Museum is thrilled to present the West Coast premiere of 'The Vikings Begin,' an extraordinary new exhibition of early Viking artifacts from Uppsala University in Sweden which have never been outside of Scandinavia until the exhibit opened at the Nordic Museum last fall.

'The Vikings Begin,'which opened to the public on Saturday, October 20, 2018 and continues through April 14, is on display in the temporary exhibition gallery of the Nordic Museum, which is located in the heart of Ballard at 2655 NW Market St.

The Nordic Museum is the only museum in the western United States that will host 'The Vikings Begin' exhibition. The exhibition is presented by Viking® (www.vikingcruises.com).

'We're excited to host this amazing exhibition of early Viking artifacts, many of them over 1,400 years old,' said Eric Nelson, executive director of the Nordic Museum. 'Whether you are young or old, whether you have Nordic roots or not, the Vikings hold a special place in our collective imaginations. This exhibition will deepen our understanding of how the Vikings lived and how their maritime innovation shaped a significant part of the globe.'

'The Vikings Begin' features dozens of early Viking artifacts from Uppsala University in Sweden, which is home to the world's largest collection of Viking and pre-Viking boat grave finds. The artifacts include Viking helmets, swords and other weapons, jewelry, glass, bowls and more, dating as far back as the 7th century. The exhibition is divided into thematic sections on Viking warfare, maritime trade, a ship burial, Norse gods, the Baltic Sea, and geo-political relationships to other cultures.

The exhibition is based on recent research, which sheds new light on how early Viking society was organized, the role of women in early Viking society, and the development of Viking maritime innovation that enabled the Vikings to reach faraway lands in both the East and the West.

'Bringing this kind of world-class exhibition to Seattle is exactly why we built the new Nordic Museum to Smithsonian standards for climate control and security,' Nelson said. 'We could not have hosted these kinds of fragile and priceless artifacts in our old location.'

In addition to hosting the exhibition itself, the Nordic Museum is also hosting a series of lectures from world-renowned Viking scholars, including several from the new center of excellence for the study of the Viking Age at Uppsala University.

As part of the opening weekend, Dr. Marika Hedin, director of Gustavianum at Uppsala University, will gave a lecture on the innovative research efforts and archaeological digs that made 'The Vikings Begin' exhibition possible. Prior to leading Gustavianum, Dr. Hedin served as the director of the Vasa Museum between 2009 and 2014, and senior curator at the Nobel Museum for ten years. She is the author and editor of several books and has been a frequent contributor on radio and television.

'To understand the story of how the Vikings began, the exhibition examines their relationship with the outside world, their spiritual beliefs, the role of warfare, the importance of water and waterways, and how trade routes influenced their world,' said Dr. Hedin.

'The exhibition includes magnificent weapons, both for attack and defense, and also smaller treasures such as jewelry and objects with magical importance,' said Dr. Hedin. 'The finds come from both male and female graves, as both sexes played important roles in society. Recent finds even indicate that women sometimes actively participated in battle; however, their power resided primarily on the spiritual and magical sides of life.'



Admission to 'The Vikings Begin' is free for Nordic Museum members. For nonmembers, there is a $5 charge for admission to the temporary exhibition, in addition to applicable Museum entrance fee, including on First Thursday when general admission is free. Given the anticipated interest in the Vikings exhibition, advance reservations are recommended. Reservations to visit the temporary exhibition can be reserved online at http://nordicmuseum.org/exhibitions/thevikingsbegin.

The museum is located at 2655 NW Market St. The museum is open Tuesday-Sunday, 10am-5pm with extended hours to 8pm on Thursdays. General admission: $15 general; $12 seniors (65+); $10 students (with ID) and youth (K-12); free for members. First Thursday each month is free for general admission. The museum is closed on Mondays. For more information call (206) 789-5707 or visit http://nordicmuseum.org

ABOUT THE NORDIC MUSEUM
Recently relocated to a stunning new facility in the heart of Seattle's Ballard neighborhood, the Nordic Museum is the only museum in the United States that showcases the impact and influence of Nordic values and innovation in contemporary society and tells the story of 12,000 years of Nordic history and culture, across all five Nordic countries: Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden. The Museum's mission is to share Nordic culture with people of all ages and backgrounds by exhibiting art and objects, preserving collections, providing educational and cultural experiences, and serving as a community gathering place. The Nordic Museum presents a wide range of vibrant programs including contemporary art exhibitions, outstanding concerts, lectures, and films, and a variety of special events throughout the year.

ABOUT GUSTAVIANUM, UPPSALA UNIVERSITY MUSEUM
Uppsala's largest university museum cares for the University's magnificent collections of archaeological objects, coins, art, historic scientific instruments, and much more. Our role has three main dimensions: our museum building, Gustavianum, is a place for collaboration between the University and the rest of society; our exhibitions and program of events are inspired by, and reflect, the University's collections and research at Uppsala University; and we ensure that our collections are accessible for research and teaching at the University and other institutes of higher education, not just in Sweden but also in other countries. In addition, we endeavor to be a resource for the careers and competence development of University students, through our work experience placements and by offering part-time employment in various parts of the organization. For more information, please visit http://www.gustavianum.uu.se.

ABOUT VIKING ®
Viking was founded in 1997 with the purchase of four ships in Russia and is now the leader in river and small ship ocean cruising. Designed for discerning travelers with interests in science, history, culture and cuisine, Chairman Torstein Hagen often says Viking offers guests 'the thinking person's cruise' as an alternative to mainstream cruises. In its first three years of operation, Viking has been rated the #1 ocean cruise line in Travel + Leisure's 2016, 2017 and 2018 'World's Best' Awards. Viking currently operates a fleet of 69 vessels, offering scenic cruising on rivers and oceans around the world. In addition to the Travel + Leisure honors, Viking has also been honored multiple times on Condé Nast Traveler's 'Gold List' as well as recognized by Cruise Critic as 'Best Overall' Small-Mid size ship in the 2018 Cruisers' Choice Awards, 'Best River Cruise Line' and 'Best River Itineraries,' with the entire Viking Longships® fleet being named 'Best New River Ships' in the website's Editors' Picks Awards. For additional information, contact Viking at 1-855-8-VIKING (1-855-884-5464) or visit www.vikingcruises.com.

Courtesy of the Nordic Museum

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