A united struggle to preserve the cultural heritage for generations to come

Although there is quite some archaeological activity in Tuna el-Gebel since more than 100 years (see History), it still lacks preservation of this heritage. Since 2009 German art conservators got involved and started to investigate the technology of the wall paintings in Tuna el-Gebel. Parallel to these investigations, work has begun to document the state of condition of the interiors of the tomb houses. On the base of this information a conservation concept for emergency treatment on this site has been developed.

Since 2012 until 2018 a cooperation program between Minya University and the University of Applied Sciences and Arts (HAWK) in Hildesheim took place in order to train Egyptian and German students the skills of conservation. The students were able to adapt previously learned theories into practical conservation treatment on the site and to preserve some of the most endangered wall paintings. Additionally, a documentation in writing, pictures and graphics of all investigations and treatments was created.

A lot of work has been done, klick the pin on GB 06, GB 07, GB 10, GB 13, GB 16, GB 20, GB 21, GB 24, GB 25, GB 27 or GB 33, but still more needs to be done. The aim of our project is to protect the wall paintings from further decay.

Conservation of a Roman Tomb House in Tuna el-Gebel, October/November 2019 and 2021

This project was supported by the German Foreign Office and its Cultural Preservation Programme, by the State Museum Hanover and by the Egyptian Museum Cairo. We are very grateful for all support.

The project incorporated stabilization work of the architecture, including a new roof for the connected chambers, and pre-consolidation of wall plaster and paintings in 2019. In 2021 conservation of the delicate wall paintings was the focus. A detailed report on the Egyptian-German conservation work can be viewed here.

In memory of Prof. Dr. Nicole Riedl-Siedow (1971-2017)

Prof. Dr. Nicole Riedl-Siedow has been a dedicated university teacher and an excellent conservator for wall paintings. Her profound knowledge and experience in conservation and her research focus on Roman wall paintings, the topic of her doctoral thesis, made her an ideal partner for working with Egyptian experts and students. She has played a crucial role in developing a conservation concept for the wall paintings of Tuna el-Gebel. In 2012 she initiated the cooperation between the University of Applied Sciences (HAWK) Hildesheim and Minya University, Faculty of Fine Arts, for a Summer and field school program to train Egyptian and German students in conservation of wall paintings. Her kind personality and her passion for teaching has made her won the attentiveness and the hearts of all trainees. With Prof. Dr. Hussein Ali Mohammed she made an ideal team for this university cooperation.

Her sudden death in August 2017 left all of us in a deep grief. Prof. Dr. Nicole Riedl-Siedow will remain unforgetable, profoundly in our hearts forever.