University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology

Uncrating a Masterpiece: The Lod Mosaic has Arrived!

January 31, 2013

This past Saturday, January 26th, the centerpiece of our new exhibit, Unearthing a Masterpiece: A Roman Mosaic from Lod, Israel arrived and work began to set the pieces into place.

Head Conservator Lynn Grant observes from the 35 ft. platform over the Warden Garden.
Head Conservator Lynn Grant observes from the 35 ft. platform over the Warden Garden.

The mosaic is so big, that it is shipped in 7 crates.  The crates themselves are so large, that they could not be brought in through the Museum’s loading dock because they are too wide to move through the museum.  Instead a platform, 35 feet above the Warden Garden Koi pond, was built that extended through the sliding wooden doors that lead to the grand staircase and the 3rd floor Pepper Gallery where the mosaic will be on display until May 19th.

100 ft. tall crane lifts a crate from South St. to the platform.

The project required closing South Street in front of the Museum, so that a 100 ft tall crane could be positioned to lift each of the seven crates from the street to the platform.

One of seven crates being skillfully lowered into place.

The entire process took approximately six hours (not counting the weeks of planning and preparation).

The large sliding oak doors, original to the 1899 building, were restored in 2011.

Once inside, the crates were opened in the gallery, where a team of object handlers pieced together the oversized puzzle.  Two conservators from Israel then spent the next four days seamlessly fitting the pieces back together.

The mosaic being uncrated and pieced together.

Come join us on Sunday, February 10th for the ribbon cutting ceremony at 1:00 pm followed by a lecture and family activities.

Over the wall!





© Penn Museum 2018 Sitemap | Contact | Copyright | Disclaimer | Privacy |