To Shake or Not to Shake: An New Interpretation of a Devastated Foreign Landscape Depicted at Luxor Temple
Speaker: Danielle Phelps, University of Arizona
February 25, 2016, 6pm
Pueblo Grande Museum
On the exterior western wall of Luxor Temple is a carved battle scene amongst the scenes that are depictions from Syria, dating to the time of Ramesses II (ca. 1291 to 1213 BCE). The scene portrays only a collapsing migdol (a type of Syrian settlement structure) and its associated vineyards and gardens, which appear broken and uprooted. There are no human or animal figures nor any hieroglyphs which would provide more information about why the ancient Egyptians would depict this type of scene. This presentation will examine the art historical significance of the devastated landscape and propose that the scene depicts the remains of a natural disaster, an earthquake, which the ancient Egyptians came upon during their military campaigns, whereupon they declared an Egyptian victory over the already ruined landscape.
Danielle Phelps is currently a Ph.D. candidate in the School of Anthropology at the University of Arizona. Her dissertation topic focuses on applying anthropological theory to ancient Egyptian mortuary practices. She received her M.A. in Art History with an emphasis on Ancient Egyptian Art and Archaeology from the University of Memphis in 2009. She has over eight years of excavation experience in Egypt and has been on several different excavations in Mexico, Italy, and the American Southwest. Her interests include the application of Geographic Information Studies (GIS) analyses to archaeological issues, bioarchaeological investigations, mortuary rituals and practices, and how all of these techniques and methods can be applied to the study of ancient Egypt.
For a printable PDF flyer for this lecture, click here: Phelps Flyer
For a link to directions to Pueblo Grande, click here: Pueblo Grande