The last SSEA lecture of our 2017-2018 season will take place on Friday, May 11, at 7pm (venue TBD), on the The Pyramid Complex of Senwosret III at Dahshur: Discoveries and Enigmas. We look forward to seeing you there!
Dr. Adela Oppenheim (Metropolitan Museum of Art)
Friday, May 11 at 7 pm
The Metropolitan Museum of Art’s Egyptian Expedition has been working in and around the pyramid complex of Senwosret III for 27 years. During this time, temples and chapels related to the king’s cult and those of the women of his family have been excavated along with several mastabas that belonged to his high officials. The excavation has uncovered fragments of architecture and relief decoration that are not only beautiful works of art, but reveal important information about transformations in cultic belief. However, important questions remain: What was the nature of the new ideas surrounding the king’s cult and beliefs about his afterlife? Why and how did these changes manifest themselves in new architectural forms? Where was Senwosret III actually buried? If he was buried at Abydos, as some evidence suggests, then why were queens, princesses, and officials interred at Dahshur?
Adela Oppenheim is a curator in the Egyptian Art Department of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. She received her B.A. from New York University, M.A. from the University of Pennsylvania, and Ph.D. from the Institute of Fine Arts, New York University for a dissertation on the decorative program of Senwosret III’s pyramid temple. She codirects the Museum’s excavations at the Middle Kingdom pyramid complex of Senwosret III at Dahshur (with Curator Emeritus Dieter Arnold), where her work focuses on the relief decoration of the king’s temples and chapels, as well as the mastabas of high officials. Adela has written and lectured extensively on Middle Kingdom art and the results of the Dahshur excavations. She was co-curator (with Dorothea Arnold) of the exhibition Ancient Egypt Transformed: The Middle Kingdom, held at the Metropolitan Museum in fall/winter 2015-16 and was one of the editors and authors of the accompanying catalogue.
(Feature photos courtesy of Dr. Adela Oppenheim; biographical image from the Metropolitan Museum of Art)