We’re getting active on the blog today. Rather than tell you all about a new exhibit or reveal the quirks of some of our curatorial staff, this entry requires some effort on your part.
In order to fully enjoy today’s post, you’ll have to get your tuchus to 5555 Hermann Dr., where you might have heard a little something about a new Hall of Ancient Egypt:
Our education department teamed up to take stock of the new hall — which is teeming with artifacts from the earliest investigations to those examined with 21st-century technology — and created an engaging Egyptian scavenger hunt.
Navigate the hall on your smartphone or click here to print these pages for an extra activity during your next visit!
Ancient Egyptian artists adhered to strict rules when producing works of art. The human form was depicted with the head in profile, eye drawn in full, torso forward-facing, and legs in profile — one foot in front of the other. This style, known as frontalism, gave the figures a sense of formality. Whether standing or sitting, the subjects appear rigid in pose: gaze set, body stiff.
Red lines represent the system used in the Old Kingdom. The addition of the white graph is indicative of the system used from the Middle Kingdom to the Late Period
Proportions were kept consistent through the use of grids and lines. The earliest examples from the Old Kingdom employed a simple system of horizontal guidelines with one vertical line bisecting the figure though the ear. Beginning with the Middle Kingdom up to the Late Period, a grid of 18 squares was used to reproduce standing figures and to allow the picture to be enlarged or made smaller while ensuring that the proportionality of the figure’s anatomy remained intact.
Paintings were most likely planned on papyrus paper and later transferred to tomb walls by an artisan using the grid system as an aid.
Try your hand at using the grid system to copy an ancient Egyptian work of art! All you need is a copy of the blank grid, a copy of the tomb painting on the grid, and a pencil.
If you didn’t make World Trekkers: Egypt last Friday, we hate to break it to you, but you missed out.
There were belly dancers, a whirling dervish and TWO congenial camels, named Gunther (above) and Teddy (not pictured). Even our own Director of Social Media and Assistant Director of Public Relations & Marketing tapped into their Arab roots and delighted our younger guests as Cleopatra and King Tut.
Gunther was quite the hit with the kiddies.
Face painters kept it festive.
Belly dancers got hips swiveling.
Damien and Ernesto from Cat Eyes Makeup Artistry made everyone look like Egyptian royalty.
And our brilliant volunteers designed crafts to take home AND teach you something.
So if you’re feeling a twinge of regret, file that away for now. Just don’t miss our next World Trekkers event Aug. 9, when we indulge our inner Francophile in France!
As the Digital Media Editor, I get a lot of strange emails. Some are from spambots offering awkward praise for our blog. Others are more direct, like “What is a Digital Media Editor even for, anyway?” and “Why isn’t everything free, everywhere, always?”
But the strangest — and most exciting — email I’ve received lately was from none other than Ankh-hap, the Museum Mummy.
You’ve probably run into Ankh-hap in his corner home in the basement, tucked underneath a set of stairs. He’s so far been the star of our meager Egyptian offerings, but all that’s about to change — and he got wind of it.
Here’s what the ruling Museum Mummy had to say:
Before I could even get back to him with an honest neighborhood pedi recommendation, there was more:
It was clear that Ankh-Hap had heard about the new Hall of Ancient Egypt, and I had to craft the perfect tactful response. The correspondence that’s followed has been nothing short of enchanting. Check back here on Mondays this month for more Mummy Mail!