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ICON Archaeology Group and the Fitzwilliam Museum, University of Cambridge

Decorated Surfaces on Ancient Egyptian Objects: Technology, Deterioration and Conservation

6-9 September 2007, Cambridge

 

Highly successful conferences on the conservation of Ancient Egyptian objects were held by the UKIC Archaeology Section in 1988 and 1995. The context for the third conference was the complete refurbishment of the Fitzwilliam Museum’s Egyptian Galleries, which have recently reopened to the public.

The conference took place in Cambridge on 7-8 September 2007. The main focus was decorated surfaces on any substrate - from polychrome wood to coloured basketry, from patinated metal to painted textiles.

To coincide with the conference, there was a rare showing of the Fitzwilliam's fabulous papyrus Book of the Dead of Ramose, in an exhibition that included information about the examination and conservation which has been in progress for the last year and a half.
On the evening of 7 September there was a reception in the Courtyard of the Fitzwilliam Museum and a private view of the exhibition.

The conference concluded on the evening of 8 September with the Stephen Glanville Memorial Lecture, delivered by Professor Barry Kemp, McDonald Institute for Archaeological Research, who is the director of the Amarna Project, entitled Akhenaten's mud brick city: residents of the past, guardians of the present. Professor Kemp's lecture included discussion of the site preservation methods that have been developed at Amarna over the last decade. The talk was followed by a reception in the Egyptian Galleries of the Fitzwilliam Museum. The galleries were reopened in May 2006 after a nineteen-month closure for complete refurbishment and redisplay.

The conference was preceded on 6 September 2007 by a day of small-group workshops and practical seminars held in the Fitzwilliam Museum and based around objects examined and treated during the research and conservation programme that has been part of the gallery refurbishment project. This provided the opportunity for small groups to undertake more detailed examination and discussion of areas of specific interest.

On Sunday 9 September there were guided tours of the Egyptian galleries, conservation labs and stores, a presentation and film by the team who rescued the Tarharqo temple wall painting at Qasr Ibrim and Dana Goodburn-Brown gave a mummy-wrapping workshop.

Find out more

For more information about the event, please follow one of the links below.