Frank Wiersema is a photographer who is specialized in showing what life must have looked like in various periods in history. His passion for prehistory made working with Hunebedcentrum an obvious choice. Frank Wiersema and Hunebedcentrum share the same vision; to make life in the stone-age come to life. Where it is usually something very abstract, their aim is to make this era tangible. In 2017 they colaborated to make a photo series on various aspects of life with the Funnelbeaker people (the Hunebed builders).

hunebedcentrum frank wiersema
The first permanent dwellings in the northern part of today’s Netherlands were built by people from the Funnelbeaker culture. Most of their daily life was probably lived outdoors, but this picture shows that it must also have been cosy inside. Fish and meat is cooked over the central hearth and the typical funnelbeaker pots are used for cooking. The youngsters are learning how to grind the corn. Things like porridge was likely an important part of the everyday diet. This picture also shows that dogs are already domesticated.
Frank Wiersema
Life wasn’t always fun in this era. Traces of violence have also been found, as can be seen in the museum, like cleaved in skulls.
Hunebedcentrum foto Frank Wiersema
We don’t know the faith of the Funnelbeaker people. We do have findings though of objects that were most likely offered to the water, like funnelbeaker pots and animal skulls. The bog bodies (like the famous Yde girl) were probably also sacrificed. But this was in a much later time period, the late bronze age and iron age and by a different culture.
Hunebedcentrum Foto Frank Wiersema
Though the Funnelbeaker people were the first farmers, an important part of their diet still came from hunting game and gathering food from the wild.
hunebedcentrum frank wiersema
The Hunebedden are grave monuments. A Hunebed wasn’t built for just one person. For up to a couple of hundreds of years, burials kept being added. In this burial, we see a person coloring a flint axe red with ochre and another person blunting an arrowhead through scratching. We know from archaeological finds that these practices took place.

Frank Wiersema

Frank Wiersema graduated from the Photoacademy Amsterdam in 2010 with illustrational photography. He likes to tell stories and to make life just that bit more interesting than everyday life. During his time at the academy he developed a style characterized by hyper-realism and a keen eye for detail. After his graduation he started applying his type of production to history, a subject-matter that he has been passionate about for most of his life. Through different projects, he built a network of living history and experimental archaeology, enabling him to set up high end productions that picture a detailed and vivid image of everyday life, in a historically correct way.


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