My projects

Breaking the Mould: A cross-cultural analysis of the character of bronze smiths and craft diversity in late Bronze Age Europe (1300-800 BC)
I am just launching this project, so a general description for now would be: During the late Bronze Age in Europe (c. 1300-800BC) there was a transition in metal consumption from a restricted-access prestige material to a common medium for making practical objects. The objective of this project is to characterise culturally particular developments in bronze workshop practices using case-study areas in Europe, and through this to rethink relationships linking resource control, craft organisation and identity formation. This is achieved by measuring variability in the technological choices, skillsets and knowhow underlying smithing traditions and defining the social practices of craft production. I will employ a cross-cultural approach using three case studies: the Balkans, Central Europe and Northwest Europe. Multidisciplinary diagnostics will be used to assess technological markers that reveal intentional differences in production techniques. Methods will include 1) collating and analysing metallurgical datasets 2) recording and 3D modelling of craft traces on artefacts, 3) experimental bronze casting and material analysis.

Weapons, warfare and mobility in South East Europe in the Late Bronze Age

Building on the research conducted through a Marie Curie Fellowship at the University of Sheffield, I am collaborting with Roger Doonan, Marija Ljustina and Dragan Jovanovic on publications and conference presentations detailing the results of this work. In this project we have been examining the role of warfare in regional interaction. A specific focus has been on characterising traditions of weapon manufacture and combat use in Greece and the Central Balkans. This has involved a targeted program sampling weaponry for metallographic analysis to explore craft traditions of the Middle to Late Bronze Age.



Borderlands ARISE: Archaeological Research of Idjos Site and Environment
Together with my colleagues Neda Mirković, Miroslav Marić and Lidija Milasinović, I will be excavating a multiperiod site of regional significance in the Great Hungarian Plain. This site, Gradiste Idjos, was established at the very beginning of the Neolithic when the first farmers were settling Central Europe and continued to develop into a sizeable town by the Middle-Late Neolithic. Immediately adjacent to this on the same ridge, a Bronze Age fortification was established in the 13th-11th century BC. This was part of a network of massive fortifications emerging in the region around this time, marking a signifiant period of change in social strucutres and it is believed in environmental conditions.


The Priniatikos Pyrgos Excavation project

Having excavated the site of Priniatikos Pyrgos in East Crete initially in collaboration with Barbara Hayden and laterly also Jo Day and Vera-Klontza between 2007-2010, we are now bringing the results of this work to publication. Our recent paper in the American Journal of Archaeology presents interdisciplinary results of our excavation of Early Minoan I archaeology and we have also recently published a book presenting results of the work of our team and that of other colleagues working in the area. Download the contents here>.




3D analysis of use wear and craft traces of Irish Bronze Age artefacts

I initiated this project in 2014 in collaboration with Aidan O'Sullivan, Mariusz Wisniewski and Stephen Fox to investigate the role of new developments in 3D modelling for analysing traces of craft activity and use-wear on prehistoric bronze artefacts. Specifically, we are documenting 40 tools and weapons from prehistoric Ireland using photogrammetry and laser-scanning. These two methods represent very different technologies, methods of recording and ultimately practicalities of access to specialised equipment and / or software.

The 3D revolution in photogrammetry in particular has made it widely available to researchers, and our particular interest is in assessing how useful are the current versions of this software for addressing specific archaeological research questions. Both laser scannng and photogrammetry have great potential for sharing archaeological collections with diverse audiences whereby artefacts are virtually downloadable. This resource is also enabling new collaborative endeavours between colleagues who can analyse artefacts in detail from remote locations and discuss pattens observed. The program will also be undertaking experimental replication of artefacts using the 3D imagery as a template. Replica artefacts will be tested in simulated practical-use contexts to define the development of use-wear and compare this in real time with 3D reproductions (using 3D printing) of ancient artefacts. This work is currently at a pilot stage and is being funded by the Irish Research Council through a New Foundations grant.

Who is on board: Maritime perspectives on the prehistoric Aegean
In collaboration with Ciler Cilingiroğlu and Marina Milić I am organised a session on maritime connectivity at the Annual Meeting of the European Association of Archaeologists in Istanbul in September 2014. For me this builds on the work of my forthcoming book exploring scales and modes of interaction from the Neolithic to Iron Age Aegean, and a very welcome opportunity to develop a new collaboration with these colleagues. The proceedings of this session will be published in 2016 by Oxbow Books.

We were pleased to host contributions by Tristan Carter, Daniella E. Bar-Yosef Mayer, Martin Furholt, Marina Milić, Valeska Becker, Bogdana Milić, Barbara Horejs, Margarita Nazou, Veronica Maxwell, Barry Molloy, Borja Herrero Legarra, Sinan Ünlüsoy, Vasıf Şahoğlu, Christina Papoulia, Shelley Wachsmann, Žarko Tankosić, Assaf Yasur-Landau, Nicolaie Şorodoc, Steven J. Vasilakis, Helen Dawson, Çiler Çilingiroğlu, Canan Çakırlar, Francesco Iacono, Andrew Bevan, James Conolly, Despina Catapoti and Giorgos Vavouranakis.