For release: April 20, 2009
For press information, contact Dr. Mariam Ayad, 901-678-2555
The Institute of Egyptian Art and Archaeology at the University of Memphis will present
an illustrated lecture by Dr. Francesco Tiradritti on Monday, April 27, at 7:30 p.m.
in the Meeman Journalism Building Auditorium. A reception at 7 p.m. will precede the
lecture. The event is free and open to the public.
Tiradritti will discuss “Excavating the Tomb of Harwa (TT 37): In Search of the African
Roots of the Pharaonic Renaissance.” A renowned Italian archaeologist and former holder
of the Dorothy K. Hohenberg Chair in Art History at the U of M, Tiradritti is director
of the Italian Archaeological Mission to Luxor.
The Tomb of Harwa is the earliest surviving monument displaying the typical features
of the “Pharaonic Renaissance,” a moment in Egyptian history that showed a peculiar
awareness of the past. The tomb’s fine decoration was clearly inspired by the past.
Images and texts preserved in this tomb find their antecedents in works dating to
the Old, Middle, and New Kingdoms, which were already considered classic epochs of
the Egyptian civilization. Recent excavations, carried out by the Italian Archaeological
Mission to Luxor, are leading to a reconsideration and re-contextualization of these
Harwa was an administrator of the estate of the God’s Wife of Amun (a high-ranking
priestess) during Egypt’s 25th, or Nubian, dynasty (710-664 BC).
In addition to providing an updated report of recent excavations carried out at the
Tomb of Harwa, this lecture will highlight the integration of African cultural elements
introduced by Egypt’s Nubian pharaohs and their courts, and will elaborate on the
spread of this revival in Egyptian society of that period.
The lecture is made possible by Dorothy K Hohenberg Chair of Excellence and Public
Parking is available in the Fogelman garage or the Central Avenue parking lot. For
more information, call 901-678-2555.