Tuesday, October 23, 2012

University of Pennsylvania Museum

Figure 1 - Gilded Bulls Head from a Harp
     The University of Pennsylvania Museum in Philadelphia has a great collection of ancient Near Eastern Art. Their collections of Egyptian and Mesopotamian art are extensive and well worth visiting.

     The museum has set up a conservation project for some of the Egyptian mummies and coffins in their collection. The conservators can be seen as they work by visitors to the museum and they will answer questions from the visitors at certain times of the day. Here is a link to an article on the project.
Figure 2 - The "Ram in the Thicket" from Ur

     The museum has a long history of conducting scientific research on mummies. They have examined mummies to determine what the person ate and what diseases or parasites they may have suffered from.

     The University Museum also has a superb collection of Mesopotamian artifacts from the excavations at Ur. Three of its most famous artifacts are pictured here.

     Figure 1 is the gilded head of a bull with a lapis lazuli beard on the front of a large harp. Figure 2 is the "Ram in a Thicket" made of thin sheets of gold and Lapis Lazuli. This object had been virtually crushed by the weight of the dirt heaped up on it thousands of years ago and had to be painstakingly restored. Figure 3 is a scene from the "Standard of Ur".

Figure 3 - The "Standard of Ur"
     Ur was excavated by a joint expedition of the British Museum and the University of Pennsylvania and the collection of objects from the excavations are split between London and Philadelphia.

     If you can get to Philadelphia, do visit this museum as it is well worth the visit.

No comments:

Post a Comment