Written by Yasser Abdelrady, Conservator, Nubia Museum (Egypt, ITP Fellow 2019)
I am pleased to be one of the participants from the Nubia Museum in preparing and equipping the temporary exhibition of the archaeological mission of Jaen University, Spain who have been working in the Qubbet El-Hawa archaeological area in west Aswan since 2008.
The exhibition is entitled A Decade of Excavation at Qubbet El-Hawa, The Result of the University of Jaen.
The exhibition was scheduled to open in 2018, but due to COVID-19, the opening was postponed. It was officially opened on 25th November 2021 in the presence of:
- Mr. Ahmed Abdel Rahman, General Director of the Nubia Museum.
- Dr. Alejandro Jiménez Serrano, Head of the Spanish Mission.
- Dr. Juan Gomez Ortega, President of Jaen University.
- Dr. Ayman Mahmoud Othman, President of Aswan University
- Dr. Candido Cris, Cultural Counselor of the Spanish Embassy in Cairo
- Dr. Abdel Moneim Said, General Director of the Aswan and Nubia Archaeological Area
- Mr. Yasser Gad El-Rab, General Director of the Office of the Ministry of Tourism in Aswan.
And a number of employees of the Ministry of Tourism & Antiquities in Aswan and members of the Spanish mission and other foreign missions operating in Aswan.
The exhibition was prepared in the temporary exhibition hall of the Nubia Museum and includes more than 250 objects from different periods extending from the Old Kingdom to the late period. The objects were distributed among 22 showcases.
The exhibition showcases were not designed from modern materials, but used simple materials consisting of wood reinforced with iron in order to highlight the idea of the exhibition, which is that the objects are still in their natural environment on the site and that these showcases represent transport and storage boxes.
In addition we used sand transferred from the original location of the excavations to display some objects inside the showcases. This did not prevent the use of technology, as there is a screen to display a documentary film on the work of the archaeological mission at the excavation site.
The exhibition includes a number of important objects, including parts of the skeleton of a woman who had breast cancer, which is the oldest case of breast cancer known, and skeletal remains of another woman who had myeloma.
The exhibition also includes a showcase to explain some of the environmental conditions that these collections were exposed to, and the efforts of treatment and conservation they went through, where a number of objects were displayed to show the effect of human and biological deterioration on them.
The exhibition also includes a number of funerary artefacts, including ornaments, coffins, a mummy, pottery and other various collectibles.
This exhibition is likely to run for up to two years from now. I hope you will like this exhibition.