These valleys were the cradle of the Iranian civilisations, which culminated in the rise of the Achaemenid Empire. The mountains provided shelter and raw materials. The wild animals and mythical creatures that populated the wilderness found visual representation in scenes of animals fighting on stone vessels from the gravesites of Jiroft, on imaginatively painted ceramics from Susa and in the battle scenes on the gold bowl from Hasanlu.
The exhibition opens a window onto a country that has been inaccessible for decades and whose imagery is little known in Europe. The treasures from the graves of two Elamite princesses and the spectacular finds from the burial grounds of Jiroft are shown outside Iran for the first time.