Skip to main content

Fragment of openwork decoration

1 minutes to read

Object name: Fragments of openwork decoration

Accession no.: E.GA.2897.1943

Other numbers and markings: tbd

Dimensions: H 21.3 cm W 5.4 cm D 0.1 cm

Brief description:

An open work, low-relief gilded cartonnage overlay depicting an ape-headed god, most probably Hapy (one of the four Sons of Horus). Hapy stands on a square plinth and holds some type of garment/length of folded cloth in his hands.

The piece of openwork is made from approximately four layers of densely tabby woven linen impregnated with adhesive. The fibres are ā€˜sā€™ plied. The linen was cut to shape prior to the application of the preparation layer or gilding. Black sketch lines are visible on the back of the piece.

After cutting, a white calcite preparation layer was applied to the front of the linen; in areas this has also covered the edges of the linen. The preparation layer has been applied thicker in areas to build up the low relief decoration. The gold leaf was applied directly to the surface of the preparation layer, folding around the edges of the piece. It is unclear if an adhesive was used or if there is a binder in the preparation layer.

The back of the linen is coated with a partial layer of black resin. The textile impressions in this layer suggest that it was used to adhere the openwork piece to a cartonnage or textile base. There are small patches of this black resin on the front of the gilding.

Date: Late Period

700-30 BC

Further dating information

Find spot: tbd

Further find spot information

Acquisition: Given by R.G. Gayer-Anderson, 1943

Further acquisition information

Construction, decoration and materials:

Basic info: JD will do

Further information about construction, decoration and materials

Other information

Conservation treatments


Other images

Fragment of openwork decoration (front)

Fragment of openwork decoration (reverse)

Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn
University of Cambridge logo The British Academy Logo Isaac Newton Trust logo GCRF Logo Leverhulme Trust logo
University of Cambridge Museums logo Designation scheme Logo Accredited Museum status logo Cambridge City Council Logo Arts Council England Logo Research England logo