The bear in prehistoric art

Design and creation of programs and mediation devices for the Musée d'Archéologie Nationale

2016 - 2017

As part of the exhibition entitled “L’ours dans l'art préhistorique” [The bear in prehistoric art] (from 16 October 2016 to 30 January 2017), the Musée d’Archéologie Nationale of the Domaine National de Saint-Germain-en-Laye decided to share with families the diversity, richness and quality of Paleolithic visual arts around the theme of the bear.

The museum provides the public with a fun exhibition to offer a deeper understanding of bear imagery and the meanings we can draw from it.

Cartel vidéo au sein de l'exposition
Video plaque in the exhibition © Vincent Arbelet


In collaboration with the project management team led by exhibition designer Marion Golmard, Reciproque was awarded the contract to design and produce the multimedia and audiovisual mediation devices.

The mediation offering consists of various screens presenting 3D scans of the artefacts which guide the public when examining the prehistoric pieces on display. These highly accessible video plaques enable visitors to understand how the Paleolithic objects were used from both a scientific and artistic perspective. An interactive table offers visitors a fun way to test their new-found knowledge on each object made of bone, stone, reindeer antlers and engraved sandstone, as part of a collaborative game. This platform is accompanied by an audiovisual installation in keeping with the scenography. It displays bears depicted in hidden or difficult-to-reach places in the Chauvet-Pont d'Arc cave and the Lascaux cave.

As part of the exhibition program, all the multimedia devices were presented at the Laténium museum in Neuchâtel in 2018.

Reindeer and bear engraved on a stone © RMN-GP / reciproque
see also
Of lions and men (2018) Kléber Rossillon Grotte Chauvet 2
Bibracte (2019) Musée de Bibracte
Educational games (2015) INRAP
Lascaux IV (2012) Département de la Dordogne