University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

Category: Cultural Heritage Preservation

Seeing with A Haida Master – Robert Davidson

A 100 year old raven rattle in the collection really got his attention. Collection Object Number: NA3367A

By: Lucy Fowler Williams

We recently spent the day with renowned Haida artist, Robert Davidson, looking at old Haida carvings in Penn Museum’s collection.  Having flown across the country from Haida Gwaii, British Colombia (Canada!), Robert and his wife Terri-Lynn Williams-Davidson (a Haida attorney) arrived with their own photographer, Jack Litrell.  Their goal was to interview and record Mr. […]

Association for Asian Studies Conference 2014 – Joyce White Keynote Speaker

Dr Michael Gilligan, President of the Henry Luce Foundation, confers with Joyce White before her talk, as Luce colleague Helena Kolenda (Program Officer for Asia) listens in. Also included: Dr. Thongchai Winichakul, AAS President (far right).  Photo by Ben Abrams.

By: Beth Van Horn

“It was a dark and gloomy night” on March 29th…….but despite the rainy weather, about 400 people came out to hear Dr. Joyce White’s talk, “Hot Pots, Museum Raids, and the Race to Uncover Asia’s Archaeological Past” at the Association for Asian Studies Annual Conference in Philadelphia. Sponsored by the Henry Luce Foundation and the […]

Syrian Archaeology


By: Katy Blanchard

We are all familiar with the images of the Buddhas of the Bamiyan region of Afghanistan as well as the heartbreaking image of the looting inside in the Baghdad Museum in 2003. All political statements aside, Syria has joined this list of destruction and devastation in the midst of its own civil war. Friday’s UNESCO […]

To Hold in the Heart & Live from the Archives!

kintner laos f16-0126 still frame

By: Kate Pourshariati

A filmmaker documents her mother’s flight from Laos, archival film from Museum collections help to tell the story.

Animal Imagery from Kourion Cyprus


By: Tessa de Alarcon

I finished up my part in the Digital Kourion project over the summer and to end it I wanted to highlight some of my favorite objects that I photographed from this unique collection.  These photos are now online as part of the Penn Museum’s Online Collection Database (Kourion). One of the things I found particularly […]

Sustainable Preservation Initiative


By: Larry Coben

As both a Penn Anthropology PhD and a Museum Consulting Scholar, I am extremely concerned with saving our shared cultural heritage, whose study allows us to know so much about both the past and who we are today. And having worked in extremely poor communities where so many archaeological sites are located, I want to […]

Un Gran Exito

Luis Reina, director of the Copan Sculpture Museum, accepts his Workshop Certificate from Dr. Loa Traxler

By: Lynn Grant

That’s how they say “A big success” in Honduras.  I learned that last week in Copan, the site where Penn Museum has been involved for over 25 years.  I went to Honduras in mid February with other Museum staff members (Dr. Loa Traxler, Bob Thurlow, and Tessa de Alarcon) for two purposes:  to see the […]

A Message from Copán Ruinas


By: Tessa de Alarcon

I am in Copan Ruinas, Honduras along with Lynn Grant and Loa Traxler working on the final touches for a workshop on field conservation.  This is my first time in Honduras and therefore in Copan.   The site is certainly a marvel, but I expected it to be.  The real surprise has been the CRIA (Centro […]

Mr. Kintner meets TedX


By: Kate Pourshariati

Recently the Archives department had a request for footage of Morocco, which turned out to be for a film about current day and historic use of water in Rabat. Once again Watson Kintner’s beautiful Kodachrome footage (1951, etc.) has had another outing in the world, this time returned to Rabat where the filmmaker has presented […]

Mysteries of Kourion


By: Tessa de Alarcon

I am working on a year long project conducting a condition survey of the objects at the Penn Museum from Kourion, Cyprus, that were excavated under the direction of George McFadden. This may not sound all that glamorous, but it has some definite perks.  In particular it means that I get to examine and photograph […]

Beneath the Surface at the Penn Museum

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