As part of the Getty Conservation Institute's collaboration with Egypt's Supreme Council of Antiquities (SCA) for the conservation and management of the Valley of the Queens on the West Bank at Luxor, the GCI held the first of three courses on wall paintings conservation from February 12 to March 1, 2007. Seven Luxor-based SCA wall paintings conservators participated. The training aims to enhance knowledge and improve wall paintings conservation practice by introducing current principles of conservation theory, methodology, and decision making. In addition to the training, the conservators will work closely with the GCI team throughout the six-year project.
The course comprised classroom teaching and practical sessions in the Valley of the Queens. Teaching included an overview of current approaches to wall paintings conservation, discussion on the significance and values of wall paintings, an introduction to painting technology, and discussion of the causes of deterioration. Tomb site visits included study and identification of painting technique, previous interventions, and condition, as well as monitoring activities. One week was concentrated on documentation and condition recording as an introduction to the wall paintings assessments that the team will carry out as part of the overall project. The teaching was undertaken by wall paintings conservators Stephen Rickerby, a GCI consultant, and Lori Wong, a GCI project specialist.
Over the coming year, the SCA conservators will complete assignments that include condition recording and setting up monitoring protocols for the wall paintings in other tombs in Queens Valley. In addition, supplementary sessions on terminology and concepts have been organized throughout the year. The second training course is scheduled for February–March 2008.