1998-99 ANNUAL REPORT
W. Raymond Johnson
This year marked W. Raymond Johnson's twentieth season working for the Epigraphic Survey and his second full year as Field Director. In addition to his Survey duties (see separate report), Ray continued to pursue his personal research on stylistic changes in Egyptian art and on the theological and political motivations behind those changes. Most recently he contributed a chapter on this topic to the catalogue of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston exhibition: Pharaohs of the Sun: Akhenaten, Nefertiti, and Tutankhamun, entitled The Setting: History, Religion, and Art, which has just been published. In it he examines the phenomenon of stylistic change through Egyptian history leading up to, and including, the Amarna period. This exhibition will travel to the Art Institute of Chicago in July, 2000.
Ray has been following a personal research and documentation program designed to document unrecorded, fragmentary sculpture and relief work from the late Eighteenth Dynasty for analysis and publication. His study, "The Nfrw-Collar Reconsidered," in Gold of Praise: Studies on Ancient Egypt in Honor of Edward F. Wente, SAOC 58 (Chicago: forthcoming, 1999), at the proof stage now, focuses on colossal sculpture fragments of Amenhotep III and Queen Tiye from Medinet Habu that feature unusual iconography which proclaims their deified state. In related work, as Project Director of the Memphis "Amenhotep III Reused Block Project" for the Egypt Exploration Society, London, Survey of Memphis Expedition, he supervised a fourth short season of documentation work in November at the Ramesses II small Ptah temple in ancient Memphis, focusing on reused limestone blocks of Nebmaatre Amenhotep III exposed there. He finished collating the drawings of the sixty-two blocks and fragments identified so far with artist Will Schenck, and will return next November to study the architectural fragments. The material, quarried by Ramesses II for reuse in his Ptah shrine and presently in an active state of decay, was originally part of a bark sanctuary in Amenhotep III's great Ptah temple complex "Nebmaatre-United-with-Ptah," and will be published as a separate volume in the Egypt Exploration Society's Survey of Memphis series.
Revised: July 30, 2007