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Decorated surfaces publication cover imageDecorated Surfaces on Ancient Egyptian Objects: Technology, Deterioration and Conservation

edited by J. Dawson, C. Rozeik and M.M. Wright

Published in 2010 by Archetype Publications in association with The Fitzwilliam Museum and Icon Archaeology Group (London). 181 pages. £37.50.
ISBN: 978-1-904982-57-9

Purchase from Archetype Publications 

From monumental tomb paintings to delicate ivories, ancient Egyptian objects are some of the most complex and fragile encountered by archaeologists, curators and conservators. Those who examine, analyse and treat them face a number of practical and ethical challenges.

This volume of papers, by an international group of experts, focuses on decorated surfaces including polychrome wood, coloured basketry, patinated metal and painted textile. Aspects of technology, investigation and treatment are examined, as well as broader issues of preservation, storage and display. A comprehensive review of past and current treatments for organic objects is followed by thought-provoking case studies, technical surveys and innovative solutions to conservation problems.

Wide-ranging, authoritative and accessible, this book is essential reading for anyone concerned with the study and care of ancient Egyptian objects.



Observations on the preparation layers found on ancient Egyptian decorated coffins in the Michael C. Carlos Museum
Renée A. Stein and Peter Lacovara
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Lead cladding on a wooden royal figure: an unusual ancient surface reconstructed
Ann Heywood
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Investigation and analysis of three gilded wood samples from the tomb of Tutankhamun
Mai M. Rifai and Nesrin M.N. El Hadidi
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Egyptian colours and pigments in French collections: 30 years of physicochemical analyses on 300 objects
Sandrine Pagès-Camagna and Hélène Guichard
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Greener shades of pale: a review of advances in the characterisation of ancient Egyptian green pigments
David A. Scott
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Patina and polychromy: reconstructing some technical histories for small Egyptian bronze sculpture in the British Museum
Fleur Shearman
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Computed tomography and X-radiography of a coffin from Dynasty 21/22
Phil Parkes and David Watkinson
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The conservation of decorated organic Egyptian surfaces: a literature review
Susanne Gänsicke

Selected case studies in the treatment and preservation of Middle Kingdom polychrome wood in the collections of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston
Pamela Hatchfield and Gwynne Ryan
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Ancient Egyptian basketry: investigation, conservation and colour
Barbara Wills and Marei Hacke
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Treatment of a Dynasty 18 painted coffin, 37.47E a-e (Abbott Collection 405A)
Hiroko Kariya, Lisa Bruno, Jakki Godfrey and Tina March
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Roman Egyptian gilded cartonnage: technical study and conservation of a mummy mask from Hawara
Sophie Rowe, Ruth Siddall and Rebecca Stacey
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Deterioration and damage on encaustic mummy portraits
Lin Rosa Spaabæk
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The conservation treatment of the Roman Egyptian paintings in the Hearst Museum of Anthropology, University of California, Berkeley
Jane Williams
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The new life of Crispina: scientific analyses and conservation of an Egyptian painted shroud of the Roman period
Sandrine Pagès-Camagna, Hélène Guichard, Roberta Cortopassi, Claire Bergeaud, Elsa Vigouroux-Gaillard and Marie-France Aubert
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Material investigations of the J. Paul Getty Museum's red-shroud mummy
Marie Svoboda and Marc Walton
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Issues in the display of Egyptian decorated material
Veronika Vlkova Antoniou
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Emergency stabilisation and removal of the termite-damaged coffins found in Tomb KV-63, Valley of the Kings, Luxor
Nadia Lokma


The restoration of the funerary cartonnage of Ny-Maat-Re (Vatican Museums, MV25001.6.2-6)
Alessia Amenta
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Revisiting restorations: the re-treatment of three statues of Metjetji
Lisa Bruno
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Conserving ancient Egypt in Cambridge
Julie Dawson
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Small things in good packages: decorative surfaces in the Garstang Museum collections, School of Archaeology, Classics and Egyptology (SACE), University of Liverpool
Dana Goodburn-Brown and Christina Brooks

Coiled baskets from Deir El Medineh
Nesrin M.N. El Hadidi and Rim Hamdy
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Issues of field conservation for Late Period, Ptolemaic and Roman Period mummies from Egypt
Salima Ikram
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Identification and implication: orpiment on a child's coffin
Rob Lewis
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The conservation of a mummy mask in the Ashmolean Museum
Paulina Lobatón
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Challenges in the conservation of decorated bronzes from the Sacred Animal Necropolis at North Saqqara, Egypt
Panagiota Manti and Jennifer Gosling
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The design and application of a carbon-fibre and foaming-epoxy-resin backing system for an Egyptian wall painting rescued from the Taharqo temple at Qasr Ibrim
David Singleton and Eric Miller

Amazing Dynasty 17 jewellery from Qurneh
Lore Troalen, Maria Filomena Guerra, Jim Tate and Bill Manley
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A technical study of the red-shroud mummy from El-Hibeh, Fitzwilliam Museum, University of Cambridge
Lucy Wrapson
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