Saturday, January 21, 2012

Creative Archaeology

(click on image to enlarge)

Nubian Garden – a diptych in the fourth dimension
Watercolour, gouache and crayon
©2012 Charlene Brown

The right panel of the diptych above is based on the photograph on the right that I took on a University of Victoria Travel Study program in Egypt in 2008. It shows a relief sculpture (reassembled from shards) on a wall in Hatshepsut’s temple at Deir el-Bahri, across the river from Luxor. The mural illustrates an expedition to the Land of Punt, an exotic country on the Red Sea coast in what is now Northern Sudan.
I think any picture of the Upper Nile has to include the pyramids of the Black Pharaohs – I’ve never seen them, but I find their design fascinating. They are smaller, pointier and far more numerous than the more famous pyramids near Cairo. The fact they were built hundreds of years after the gardens of Punt were sculpted at Deir el-Bahri and are near the Nile, rather than the Red Sea, stopped me briefly…  until I thought of presenting the time/space divide as a diptych…