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January 2, 2013

As the exhibition in Berlin will run until 13 April this year I thought I should share this blog post with you. It’s a very well written piece about the exhibition “Im Licht von Amarna”. When I first read it I found the comparisons between the museums in Berlin and Manchester striking and very interesting. And of course I intend to go to Berlin before 13 April to see it for myself!

Egypt at the Manchester Museum

Nefertiti 100I have just returned from a trip to Berlin, where I took the chance to see a major new exhibition at the recently reopened Neues Museum: ‘In the Light of Amarna: 100 Years of the Nefertiti Discovery’. The exhibition was timed to coincide with the centenary of the discovery of the famous painted plaster bust of Queen Nefertiti, on the 6th of December 1912. So soon after Manchester’s own centenary and because of our rich Amarna holdings (we have almost 800 objects from the site) it seemed an ideal opportunity to revisit the Berlin Egyptian and Sudanese collections.

The exhibition space is split between two levels. It opens with the excavations of the Deutsches Orient-Gesellschaft (DOG) at Tell el-Amarna, led by Ludwig Borchardt, which discovered the bust. Borchardt’s brief diary entry contains what is still an apt description of the bust today: “No use describing it, you have to…

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