South Asasif Conservation Project


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Study Days




Study Days

UK Trust





The next South Asasif Study Day is planned for November 2016 in Newcastle, UK. Further details to follow.


Sunday, April 12th 2015 - Reading

in conjunction with TVAES (Thames Valley Ancient Egypt Society)

TVAES Fund Raising Study Day
Booking Form

Tombs of the South Asasif - Archaeology, Art and Artefacts
Latest Discoveries and Research
Speakers: Dr Elena Pischikova, Professor Paul Nicholson and John Billman
Day/time: Sunday April 12th 2015, 10.00am-4.30pm
Location: Sorby Room, Wager Building, Whiteknights Campus, University of Reading
Fee: £30

The South Asasif Conservation Project directed by Dr Elena Pischikova started work in 2006 and in recent years has included several TVAES members amongst its volunteers. What was once considered the Saite Renaissance is increasingly acknowledged as a Kushite Renaissance, with the work of the South Asasif Conservation Project at the foreground of demonstrating the monumentality of early Kushite temple tombs in Thebes with their advanced art and architecture. This Study day aims to provide an overview of recent archaeological work which includes fascinating discoveries in the tomb of Karabasken (TT 391). We'll also look at the objects from the tombs as well as the major work of the project in conserving of the tomb of Karakhamun (TT 223).

Detailed Programme:

10.00 - 11.30 Season Update: 2013 and 2014 – Dr Elena Pischikova
11.30 – 12.00 Break
12.00 - 13.00 The mystery of the burnt bones – Professor Paul Nicholson
13.00 - 14.00 lunch
14.00 – 14.30 Recent Finds and Conservation: Material Culture from the South Asasif – John Billman
14.30 – 15.00 Grids and Proportions in Kushite Tombs – Dr Elena Pischikova
15.00 - 15.30 break
15.30 – 16.30 Sculpture in the South Asasif: Ancient and Modern – Dr Elena Pischikova


Dr Elena Pischikova has directed the South Asasif Conservation Project since its inception in 2006 and is a research scholar for the American University in Cairo. Dr Pischikova's previous employment includes the Metropolitan Museum in New York where amongst other things she directed the excavation of the Saite period tomb of Nespakashuty in the North Asasif. Her publications include editing a recent volume on the South Asasif necropolis and co-editing the proceedings of the 2012 Thebes in the First Millennium Conference.

Professor Paul T. Nicholson was awarded his PhD in archaeology at Sheffield University in 1987. He held several postdoctoral positions at Sheffield working on aspects of ancient Egyptian pottery before being appointed lecturer in archaeology at Cardiff University. He is currently a Professor of Archaeology in the School of History, Archaeology and Religion at Cardiff. His research interests include ancient technology, sacred animal cults and the uses and history of photography in archaeology and Egyptology. His publications include The British Museum Dictionary of Ancient Egypt (with Ian Shaw), Ancient Egyptian Materials and Technology (co-edited with Ian Shaw), Brilliant Things for Akhenaten and most recently Working in Memphis. He has worked on numerous excavations in Egypt including Tell el-Amarna, Memphis, Hatnub, Berenike and the South Asasif.

John Billman is Chairman of the South Asasif Conservation trust and the Thames Valley Ancient Egypt Society and is a mission member of the South Asasif Conservation Project with special responsibility for objects. John has a MA in Egyptian Archaeology from UCL and teaches Egyptology to continuing education groups for the University of Oxford and the WEA.
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Saturday, February 28th 2015 - Leiden

in conjunction with Mehen, for details see and bookings contact Jan Koek at  Mehen

Saturday, 8th March 2014
Study Day - Gateway to an artistic and cultural renaissance
South Asasif Conservation Project in context

Dr Elena Pischikova and John Billman will be the principal speakers for this exciting study day which explores the process of artistic and cultural renaissance at the dawn of the Late Period. The day will focus on the case study of the tombs of the South Asasif necropolis in Thebes which provide an early example of what was to follow in Late Period tomb architecture, texts and decoration.


10.30 - Registration and refreshments
10.50 - Welcome by Janet Brewer (Secretary, Essex Egyptology Group)
11.00 - South Asasif Conservation Project – Introduction, overview and latest results from 2012 and
2013 by Dr Elena Pischikova
12.20 - Refreshments
12.45 - Late Period Archaism : Decline, Innovation or Renaissance? by John Billman
13.30 - Lunch (provided)
14.15 - South Asasif Conservation Project - anatomy of an excavation by John Billman
15.00 - Refreshments
15.30 - Kushite art in Karakhamun and Karabasken – Inspiration, Style and Technique by Dr Elena
16.30 - Close
Venue: The Barn, Spring Lodge Community Centre, Powers Hall End,
Witham, CM8 2HE
Cost (including buffet lunch) is £35 or £30 for Essex Egyptology Group Members and South Asasif Conservation Trust Friends/Patrons