Conference “The Amber of Tutankhamun”. Video Record
Exhibition “The Amber of Tutankhamun” at the Art Museum Riga Bourse highlighted the international dimension of the “Amber Vein” thematic line of “Riga 2014” Programme that goes back through the centuries to Ancient Egypt. Legend has it that several amber items were found in the tomb of Tutankhamun. Baltic experts believe that it may be amber from the shores of the Baltic Sea that became the Sun Stone in Ancient Egypt, and was meant to protect the body of the pharaoh during his lifetime and in the afterlife.
For the implementation of the project, the Latvian National Museum of Art collaborated with museums in other Baltic countries, Poland, Egypt, France and Italy. The final result is an extraordinary exhibition that occupies two floors at Riga Bourse, and two books – the exhibition catalogue and a catalogue of the Ancient Egyptian art collection of the Latvian National Museum of Art, prepared in collaboration with leading researchers from the Ancient Egypt Department of the Louvre.
In order to emphasise the role of intercultural dialogue and preservation of cultural heritage, the organisers of the exhibition presented the public unique opportunity to learn more about the various Egyptology aspects as seen by the leading Egyptologists of today. A special guest at the scientific conference on the 14th of November was Professor Dr. M. A. Nur El-Din, the Head of the Archaeology and Tourism Faculty at the Misr University for Science and Technology in Cairo, who informed the conference about the collections of Ancient Egyptian antiquities at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo.
Three speakers talked about the collections of Latvian, Lithuanian and Swedish museums, how the collections were created, and research work done by the museums. Carolina Johanson from the Museum of World Culture in Sweden, Dr. Aldona Snitkuvienė from the Čiurlionis National Museum of Art in Lithuania, and Baiba Uburģe from the Latvian National Museum of Art informed about the development and traditions of Egyptology in the Baltic and Nordic countries, and commented on the surprising diversity of items in the three museums’ collections.
One object at the exhibition is likely to generate particular interest – a sculpture of Meryre (New Kingdom, 18th Dynasty, Thutmose IV period) that is part of the LNMA collection. During the conference, lectures by the French Egyptologist, Professor Alain Zivie and University of Latvia Professor, geologist Valdis Segliņš focussed on two aspects of this historic artefact – materials used in creating the sculpture, and the identity of the sculpture.
Programme of the conference:
Ancient Egyptian Treasures in the Egyptian Museum
Prof. Dr. M. A. Nur El-Din
Head of the Archaeology and Tourism Faculty
Misr University for Science and Technology in Cairo, Egypt
The Identity of Riga Meryre
Prof. Alain Zivie, Egyptologist
Head of the French archaeological mission in Bubasteion, France
Examination of Stone Used to Create the Sculpture of Meryre
Prof. Valdis Segliņš, geologist
University of Latvia, Riga, Latvia
Robert Gayer-Anderson’s Collection and the Medelhavsmuseet in Stockholm
Curator of Egyptian collection at the Museum of World Culture
History of Egyptian Collection at Čiurlionis National Museum of Art
Dr. Aldona Snitkuvienė
Čiurlionis National Museum of Art, Kaunas, Lithuania
History and Study of Ancient Egypt Collection at the Latvian National Museum of Art
Baiba Uburģe, Curator of decorative and applied arts collection
Foreign Art Department
Latvian National Museum of Art, Riga, Latvia