Where were the Fayum mummy portraits found?

Faiyum Basin
This style of Roman-era mummy portrait has been found all across Egypt, but is most common in the Faiyum Basin area, particularly around the rich Roman city of Antinoopolis, whose upper-class inhabitants would have been able to afford the expensive mummification.

What were Fayum portraits made of?

Materials and Painting Techniques Most of the Fayum Mummy portraits were executed on thin rectangular wooden panels or boards, cut from cedar, cypress, oak, lime, sycamore and citrus. The painted boards were then attached to the layers of funereal cloth with which the body was bandaged.

Why were the Fayum portraits made?

Stylistically related to the tradition of Greco-Roman painting, but created for a typically Egyptian purpose — inclusion in the funerary trappings of mummies — these are startlingly realistic portraits of men and women of all ages.

How old is the Fayum mummy portraits?

While painted cartonnage mummy cases date back to pharaonic times, the Faiyum mummy portraits were an innovation dating to the time of the Roman occupation of Egypt. The portraits date to the Imperial Roman era, from the late 1st century BC or the early 1st century AD onwards.

Why are Fayum mummy portraits important?

They can serve as an excellent and impressive illustration of the mutual penetration of cultures. Fayum mummy portraits were created for Egyptian death rituals, dating to the Imperial Roman era, I — III centuries AD. The name “Fayum” came from the first discovery of such mummy portraits in The Fayum Oasis in 1887.

Are there Roman mummies?

Unlike the classical mummies that usually come to mind in a hard coffin of wood or cartonnage (layers of linen or papyrus glued together and often coated with stucco), Roman mummies were wrapped in cloth, sometimes in a linen shroud but more often in strips of linen arranged in intricate patterns.

How many Fayum portraits have been recovered?

900 mummy portraits
About 900 mummy portraits are known at present. The majority were found in the necropolis of Faiyum. Due to the hot dry Egyptian climate, the paintings are frequently very well preserved, often retaining their brilliant colours seemingly unfaded by time.

What was Faiyum religion?

Influences from and references to religious texts that were common in pharaonic Egypt are seen throughout the entirety of the Book of the Faiyum, standing as a testament to the longevity of Egyptian religion.

What is the oldest portrait in the world?

One of the best-known portraits in the Western world is Leonardo da Vinci’s painting titled Mona Lisa, which is a painting of Lisa del Giocondo. What has been claimed as the world’s oldest known portrait was found in 2006 in the Vilhonneur grotto near Angoulême and is thought to be 27,000 years old.

Why did the Romans place so much importance on portraits?

As the Empire commissioned funerary portraits, artisans were most likely not valued for- or expected to- render art that would reflect upon the individual and the true characteristics possessed by him or her. The principle was to make a lasting positive impression of the Empire and, accordingly, its absolute monarchs.

What is the oldest painted portrait?

What technique is used for the Fayum portraits?

Two painting techniques were employed: encaustic (wax) painting and animal glue tempera. The encaustic images are striking because of the contrast between vivid and rich colours, and comparatively large brush-strokes, producing an “Impressionistic” effect.

What is the Fayum mummy portrait?

Ancient Faces: Fayum Mummy Portraits They are known as the “Fayum mummy portraits” to the set of two thousand individualized portraits found mostly in the upper outer part of the mummies of the oasis necropolis of the same name, El-Fayum, although they are also found in other places such as Saqqara, Akhmim.

What are Fayum paintings?

Collectively, they are usually known as “Fayum paintings,” or sometimes “Fayum mummy portraits,” for most of them were recovered wrapped up in the burial linens of ancient mummies, placed in the spot where the face would once have been. They are the oldest painted portraits to have survived from anywhere in the world.

Where can I see mummy portraits?

Today, mummy portraits are represented in all important archaeological museums of the world. Many have fine examples on display, notably the British Museum, the National Museum of Scotland, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York and the Louvre in Paris.

Why are Fayum portraits so popular?

The portraits are, therefore, very nearly life-sized. Fayum paintings have been celebrated for more than a century for the vividness and immediacy of the connection that they seem to establish between modern viewers and long-dead Egyptians.