Egyptian Archaeology at London. Made of painted limestone, both pieces of sculpture belong to the same iconic type. The latter artefact looks less refined, but more spontaneousand communicative. No longer the young, anonymous married couple, gaze at an undefined point beyond death. They are staring at a potential spectator, such as we actually are. Their simple painted eyes result more lifelike than the precious crystal ones of the former dyad.In the Brooklyn Museum at New York, we can ask to view the fragment of alimestone female head, which was probably part of a family group statuette, dating from the period of the late 18
dynasty (ca. 1336-1185 B.C., New Kingdom). On the face of the unknown woman, the tight smile is a nice, relative novelty. Already in the Amarna art, asimilar evolution may be observed. In this case more than one carved portrayals of the same,well known subject, have survived. Of some of them we know even the author: Thutmose,or the skilled workers of his shop. Most famous is a polychrome limestone bust of Queen Nefertiti (ca. 1370-1330 B.C.), now on display in Berlin’s Altes Museum. Her eyelids and brows are outlined in black. One eye is still filled with a crystal inlay. Her red lips hint at animperceptible smile. The whole stands so beautiful and elegant, that certain fanciful scholarsinsinuated it to be a modern fake. Sure, there is no doubt about the
Face from a CompositeStatue of Nefertiti
, a brown quartzite head currently in the Egyptian Museum at Cairo.
3 – Thutmose (?), Face detail of a Head from a Statue of Nefertiti, in the Egyptian Museum at Cairo; and fragment fromAmarna, Egypt, in the Metropolitan Museum of Art at New York