Excavating, documenting, and housing archaeological material are the foundations of archaeological research and publication. Still, there is more to understanding the archaeological record than excavation alone. Condition assessment, material analysis, and conservation treatment are essential to preserving excavated material for future study, and to understanding its physical properties, method of manufacture, technology, and historical context. At Abydos, excavation, collections management, and object conservation go hand-in-hand as vital and seamlessly integrated components of our fieldwork. At the close of each day’s excavations during the field season, excavated material is brought to the field house collections lab for processing and registration, followed by conservation analysis and treatment. In addition to artifact processing and collections storage facilities, the Expedition also has dedicated laboratories for the conservation of new finds generated by our current excavations and the substantial archaeological study collection from previous seasons housed on-site, as well as for the study of human and faunal remains excavated at Abydos. Fieldwork at Abydos brings together an international team from across Egypt and the world each season, and this is especially true of our conservation program. The Expedition relies on an advanced conservation team every year, which is made up of professional conservators from the Egyptian Ministry of Antiquities and advanced conservation students and professionals from around the world, under the supervision of a senior conservator. The team works in support of each season’s excavation program as well as on long-term conservation initiatives. The extensive range and scope of the Expedition’s collections, together with up-to-date conservation facilities, make it one of the world’s premier archaeological conservation settings in the field.
Text and images © Abydos Archaeology 2019