Bolshoi Shigir Idol
Kept in a locked room in a bolted glass coffin at Yekaterinburg’s excellent Ural Geological Museum, there is something lonely and melancholic about the 9 foot high Shigir Idol: the world’s oldest wooden sculpture. Found in a peat bog in western Siberia, this larch carving is estimated to be around 11,000 years old, that’s twice as old as Stonehenge. Spotlit, lanky and enigmatic, it has an unexpected emotional heft.
Visitor’s tip: you have to ask one of the babushkas to show it to you, or you’d never know it was there…