Fayum Portraits

Fayum Portraits. Documentation and Scientific Analyses of Mummy Portraits Belonging to Nationalmuseum in Stockholm.

Göteborg 2000. ISBN 91-7346-382-5.


The collection of twenty-seven portraits made on wooden panels, generally referred to as Fayum portraits after the site where many were found, or mummy portraits since they were found on mummies,  were studied and the materials used on selected objects investigated. Many portraits were made in the encaustic technique, that is, the paint used was melted and pigmented beeswax, or the paint was Punic wax, a saponified beeswax.  These portraits are multicultural works of art, dated to the Roman period in Egypt and reflecting the Greek and Hellenistic painting tradition.

The investigation was made in collaboration with the departments of conservation and of research at Nationalmuseum and analyses of samples made at the scientific laboratories at Opificio delle Pietre Dure in Florence.

fayum portraits
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