Drawing Deir el-Ballas

Drawing Deir el-Ballas

Bettina Bader drawing a “fish dish” with Vicky Jensen and Christian Knoblanch

In order to prepare Reisner’s excavations at Deir el-Ballas for publication I was joined by Bettina Bader and Christian Knoblauch of the Austrian Academy of Sciences project: Beyond Politics: Material Culture in Second Intermediate Period Egypt and Nubia, START-Projekt Y 754-G19 funded by the Austrian Science, and by Niv Allon of the Metropolitan Museum of Art to study and record the material from Reisner’s work in Berkeley.

We spent the first two weeks in April drawing and recording pottery and objects in storage at the Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of the University of California at Berkeley.  We were all most grateful to the collections staff of the Hearst Museum and in particular Director Benjamin Porter and Leslie Freund, Collections Manager and Vicky Jensen for making our visit so productive and enjoyable.

Over 250 pottery vessels were examined and drawn by Egyptian ceramic experts Bader and Knoblauch along with Vicky Jensen, while I worked on over 300 small objects. Niv Allon studied the inscribed ostraca to complete his recording of the ostraca from the site in the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston conducted last year.  In addition, he examined the Hearst Medical Papyrus that also appears to have been found at Deir el-Ballas.

This publication preparation work was made possible by a generous grant from The Shelby White and Leon Levy Program for Archaeological Publications. In the coming months, we hope to complete the documentation and analysis of objects for eventual publication and will share updates on our progress.