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Safe in their hands?
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Lutz
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 21, 2015 5:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A short video... : "The Start of Restoration for Tutankhamun Mask" (Ahram Online, 20.10.2015).

Greetings, Lutz.
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tutsbeard
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 21, 2015 7:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I personally doubt Eckmann's claim the damage is reversable.

Epoxy is not soluble, meaning the only way to remove it is via crude mechanical means such as heating or prying it off; which have the potential to damage the mask further.

Since Hawass's February article detailing the beard attachment mechanism, Eckmann has changed his rhetoric and instead of talking about the beard being glued on originally he acknowledges the mechanism was the original form of attachment.

Why the damage could be irreversible, is because if epoxy got into the mechanism it would be impossible to remove from such a inaccesable space.

I think the mask is in danger of further damage.

The decision to outsource help is strange when I am confident Egypt has people with similar qualifications to do the job. Germany donated 50, 000 euross towards fixing the mask. Personally I find the decision to allow Germany to be involved sends the wrong message, that being the Egyptians cant look after their own artifacts.

Personally I think the idea put forward by Hawass to have the restoration documented and use the proceeds towards the mask and to foster an environment of transparency is a good one.

Recent article detailing latest updates http://bigstory.ap.org/article/a9fa84c41ec14febb78c7facf35dc2b3/egypt-fixing-tutankhamun-mask-after-botched-epoxy-repair
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PostPosted: Wed Oct 21, 2015 8:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great video!

Funny how they are now passing off the restoration as a way to document the beard mechanism- when none of them knew of it before Hawass wrote his piece.

Cant help but feel any restoration will only be to make the mask look aesthetically appealing. As if the beard cavity is full of epoxy the mechanism wont beable to be restored. And so the mask will exist in an altered state to what it was found in. Incredible to think a 3,000 year old mask could get irreversibly damaged in 2015 after surviving untouched from a time before our civilizations existed.

Its good Germany is offering to help, but this shows the Egyptians are unable to look after their artifacts- which means the mask is in danger as long as it resides in Egypt.
Egypts decision not to fire all the people at the museum, including senior people, involved in this is proof of my statement the mask is not safe because those tasked with keeping it safe are incompetent.

I will follow this story with fingers crossed.
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2015 1:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Beware any Hawass comments. While he was a gifted archeologist, he has become A LEGEND IN HIS OWN MIND, who takes credit for others work, and belittles those who's work fails to support his current views. Sadly he is now a bitter, media buffoon who should fade away. Just my opinion
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Lutz
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PostPosted: Thu Oct 22, 2015 2:36 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Herper wrote:
"Beware any Hawass comments. ... Just my opinion"


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Greetings, Lutz.
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2015 2:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I'd heard that before. But I still think Hawass offered the most comprehensive assessment of the mask.

I do worry about the competence of those fixing the mask. As Eckmann stating the beard was glued on in the 1940s during the initial press conference is a grave error, an error which none of his Egyptian colleagues standing beside him corrected him on during the press conference- meaning they all thought this was the original form of attachment. Just look at their facial expressions when Eckmann mentions the beard was originally glued on- their expressions remain blank and they show no signs of worry at such a statement.

Here is video showing the press conference where Eckmann states the mask was originally glued on https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UYFs9XHz4vw

Now what I find most interesting is during the famous photo of two men gluing the beard back on in front of tourists while the mask is still in the display case, you see a woman in the background talking on a mobile phone. Why this is relevant is because could this have been Dr Elham Abdelrahman on the phone updating someone about the projects progress. Who was she talking to? Is this a sign people higher up the chain of command knew about the beard being glued on. Who would know what the real story was.

Watching the video again and Tarek Tawfik is talking about how despite being well known the mask has never been scientifically studied before. Sorry wrong. As mentioned in Hawass's article the mask was scientifically studied and the beard attachment mechanism described around the time of it's discovery.

If the staff looking after the mask and those tasked with restoring it bothered to do their research on it and find these things pertaining to it's history I would feel better about them undertaking the restoration. But because they didn't they have a credibility problem in my eyes.

I really don't like the idea of restoring it now. I think they should wait until the future when someone discovers a way to dissolve epoxy or develops a method to remove it that is less invasive. I think it's irresponsible to rush the restoration just so it can look good for The Grand Egyptian Museum as it could cause more damage, and I am all about minimizing damage to the mask. If the people in charge of looking after the mask really cared about it they would first and foremost want to minimize damage to it.

I mean even if they remove the beard- if the mechanism is still full of epoxy that is unable to be removed- what will they do? They won't be able to attach the beard using a dowel joint as originally intended. They will then re-glue the beard on more neatly but still not solve the problem of restoring the mask to it's original functioning state.

Here is another interesting video that shows the tools they are using to remove the beard- wooden sticks.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iP-vk9ujAoU
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2015 2:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Found this article that has a funny cartoon about this.

Quote:
Eckmann was previously involved in the restoration of statues of Pepi I and his son Menenre. He is now working on the conservation of parts of Tutankhamun’s chariot that were discovered last year inside a box in the Egyptian Museum in Tahrir Square.


http://antinousgaygod.blogspot.com.au/2015/02/german-expert-sees-whisker-of-hope-for.html

It's probably nothing, but the article states Eckmann is also working on restoring Tuts chariots. What I find worrying about this statement is that isn't the person responsible for making the decisions that lead to this, Dr Elham Abdelrahman, now working with the 'contents of Egypts royal stables'. Which I assume include Tuts chariots. Worrying correlation between Eckmann and Abderlrahman. Could be nothing, or could be everything.

Quote:
It’s a pharaoh cop, Egyptian archaeology officials have admitted. After initially downplaying reports that Tutankhamun’s beard had been fixed with the wrong glue, the Egyptian Museum has owned up to the error – and moved its chief conservator to less glamorous pastures.

As head of conservation, Dr Elham Abdelrahman bore ultimate responsibility for the botched gluing operation, and having come unstuck, has been moved to a lower-profile role at the museum of royal vehicles.

Last week, her duties included the conservation of one of the world’s most important collection of artefacts, including Tutankhamun’s fabled death mask and jewellery, as well as hundreds of ancient mummies, tombs and statues. From now on her role will be limited to overseeing the contents of Egypt’s royal stables.


http://www.theguardian.com/culture/2015/jan/27/egyptian-museum-gluing-tutankhamun-beard-conservation-cairo
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tutsbeard
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2015 3:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The 'Ultimate Tutankhamun' documentary features a scene detailing this mask.

Start at 10:45. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7mCqCz7elnI

What's interesting is they mention the face is different to the nemes, yet they don't point out the inlay in the beard seems to be made of a different material to the rest of the inlay found on the face. The beard does not seem to be made from the same lapis lazuli used on the face; so could it have been made of coloured glass like the nemes?

When you compare the inlay used in beard on the mask to the inlay used in the beard on the solid gold coffin you notice a difference in materials between the two. Which seems to suggest, if one assumes the solid gold coffin was the only object originally made for Tuts funeral that was not recycled, that the beard also belongs to the previous owner of the mask. Why this was not investigated earlier is beyond me.

Also I wonder why the beard could be detached? Perhaps it had a function in the funeral ceremonies, where the king went from being mortal to divine-with the attachment of the beard signifying the kings attainment of divinity and transition into the other world; as the beard usually signified divinity.
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Lutz
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2015 5:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just a few brief comments as I unfortunately lack the time to dig a little deeper ...

Christian Eckmann is a worldwide leading expert when it comes to restoration of antik metall objects. Thats why the SCA under the direction of Hawass entrusted him with the restoration of the two Pepi bronzes.

Who was responsible for decades that no one could examine scientific the mask? Maybe a little bit to think before ... one sings the praises of this Indiana-Jones-for-the-poor here!

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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2015 8:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I see your point.

This whole thing is so unfortunate. I know I should not rush to judgements, but find myself preplexed as to how this could happen.

I would be interested to hear what others here thought of this whole thing.

I'm struggling to understand how experts charged with preserving the mask could be so ignorant to do this. I was prepared to give these experts the benefit of the doubt.

But their changing stories and lying have lost my support in them.

Hopefully it will work out for the best.
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2015 12:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just found this article from January that shows they did know about the special attachment mechanism, yet despite this proceeded to glue the beard on!

Quote:
A museum official, who spoke anonymously to avoid repercussions, told AFP news agency the beard had fallen off accidentally when the mask was removed from its case last year to repair the lighting.

Museum head Mahmoud al-Helwagy denied that conservation workers had damaged the mask.

"This is illogical and inconceivable," he told AFP. "These are conservation workers, not carpenters."

Antiquities minister Mahmud al-Damaty also denied the 3,000-year-old relic was treated carelessly.

"The job was done correctly," he told AFP, without explaining why curators needed to fix the mask.

Monica Hanna, an Egyptologist who inspected the mask, said she was so shocked by what she saw that her group was taking the matter to the public prosecutor.

"We are presenting a complaint on mismanagement to the prosecutor tomorrow," said Ms Hanna, from Egypt's Heritage Task Force, which has long battled mismanagement and looting of Egypt's legendary ancient artefacts.

'The curator was scared and he fixed it hastily'

According to the museum official, "there seems to have been a lapse in concentration and the mask hit the case and almost fell" when it was removed from its case.

"So [the curator] grabbed it in his arms to break the fall, and the beard separated," he said.

The long braided beard fit into the mask with a peg, and had been separated before, the official said.

"This mistake can happen. But what caused it to get worse? The curator was scared and he fixed it hastily."

The epoxy glue dried very quickly, said the official.

"You should use material [that dries slowly] and then support it, maybe over several hours or 24 hours, so you can fix mistakes," he said.

"Renovation work needs an adhesive that is easy to remove in case there is any damage, without leaving any traces."

Mr Helwagy told the official MENA news agency that epoxy glue was used internationally to fix artefacts.


http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-01-24/legal-threat-over-botched-repair-of-tutankhamuns-mask/6044068

Here Hanna is quoted as being as clueless as the curators as to how the beard was attached to the mask.

Quote:
Sonbol and other Egyptian Museum officials say reports of lasting damage to King Tut's mask are overblown.

"Everyone knows that the beard has been separated from the rest of the mask for a long time," Sonbol told CBS News. "There's even an old picture of the mask with [Egypt's former monarch] King Farouk with the beard and the mask separate."

Others, like Cairo-based Egyptologist Monica Hanna, aren't convinced.

"It's a crime, it's really an art crime, it's insane," she told CBS News. "It happened because of incompetence."

Hanna agrees with Sonbol that the mask and beard were initially separate when King Tut's tomb was discovered by Egyptologist Howard Carter in 1922. She says the Museum's attempt to glue the pieces back together has backfired spectacularly.

"The mask and beard were found detached, then they were properly soldered together," she said. "What [the Museum] did destroyed the earlier conservation."

Sonbol told CBS News that the Museum would begin another repair job on the mask starting this coming Monday.


http://www.cbsnews.com/news/king-tut-flap-egypt-museum-assailed-for-botched-repair-job-on-king-tuts-beard/

I mean where do you start when not only the people working at the museum, but the people whose job it is to hold the museum accountable, have no clue about how their artefacts actually assemble.

I read other tweets by Hanna saying the mechanism that holds the beard was destroyed, but I suspect she is meaning the wooden joint and not the actual mechanism itself. https://storify.com/zeinobia/king-tut-s-beard-saga-in-egypt

I don't really see how suing anyone is going to help the mask- if anything it could put the mask in further danger depending on how badly impacted financially the museum is by any lawsuit. I give up following this story, it's simply too much.
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 23, 2015 1:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I guess I am over reacting to this. After all it is only a material thing. The damage could have been much worse considering the mask fell. I guess the only hurt to come out of this is to tourists who unknowingly forked out a lot of money for the trip of a lifetime to Egypt only to be let down when confronted with a 3-D hologram substitute.

At the moment tourists can only view this 3-D hologram that has been set up in place of the mask while restoration takes place.

Quote:

A 3-D Hologram representation of the golden mask of Tutankhamun is seen at the Egyptian Antiquities Museum in the capital Cairo on October 21, 2015.


http://www.nation.co.ke/lifestyle/travel/Experts-repair-of-Tutankhamun-beard/-/1950822/2925242/-/12pc0jr/-/index.html

A video showing the epoxy after it has been removed with a wooden stick.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KstooD8BX1I
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Lutz
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 25, 2015 12:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Nicholas Reeves : Tutankhamun's Mask Reconsidered (in press, corrected proof). - In: BES 19. - 2014. - pp. 511 - 527.
Quote:
"... Postscript

In late September 2015 I was able to re-examine the gold mask under different lighting in its reoriented case in the Cairo Museum. Contrary to previous understanding, it is now evident that the cartouche containing Tutankhamun’s prenomen had been altered in antiquity. Beneath the present signs may be discerned clear traces of an earlier name, “[Ankh]kheperure-beloved of Nefer[kheperure],” originally contained within a significantly longer cartouche. My conclusions concerning the mask’s initial ownership thus find definitive confirmation. A photograph of the reworked cartouche, together with a brief commentary, will appear in the Journal of Ancient Egyptian Interconnections 7.4 (2015)."

Greetings, Lutz.
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 25, 2015 2:13 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I don't understand. Reeves is saying maybe the mask belonged to this other person. But I don't see how he can find evidence to prove whose name was there previously.

I find the whole 'recycling' of funeral goods bizarre in a society that was supposedly so religious. Why would a King want to have anything to do with taking away another Kings shot at eternal life. Wouldn't that negatively impact on the King and taint him. Makes me wonder how strong their belief in their gods was.

Then the dropping and damage to the mask, that caused the missing inlays, that happened in the tomb before it was interred and was evidenced when the mask was found by Carter is also strange. It's clear the AE didn't seem to care too much about their dead when you read some of these things. In fact one comes away with the impression all anyone cared about in AE was themselves.

I would go so far as to say the culture that exists in Egypt now has changed very little to the culture that existed in the past. A nation of me-ists worshipping the religion of me-ism.
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 25, 2015 6:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

tutsbeard wrote:
I don't understand. Reeves is saying maybe the mask belonged to this other person. But I don't see how he can find evidence to prove whose name was there previously. ...

See as / for example ... Marc Gabolde : Under a Deep Blue Starry Sky. - In: FS Murnane. - 2007. - "Figures" on pp. 20 - 21.

Greetings, Lutz.
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