Inkjet technology leader Xaar travels back to Ancient Egypt

19/06/2007

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Xaar, the world’s leading supplier of inkjet technology and an example of ultra modern printing technology, is proud to sponsor an exhibition of one of the finest examples of an ancient coloured document in the world: The Book of the Dead of Ramose at The Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge.

The 3,000 year old document made up of papyrus sheets originally forming a 20m roll, will be unveiled today (Tuesday 19th June) and displayed until Sunday 21st September. Visitors will have the rare opportunity to view one of the finest and most recently restored Egyptian Books of the Dead in existence.

"One of the most striking features of the Ramose papyrus is the vibrancy of colours used in the painted scenes. It feels particularly appropriate that a company whose primary concern is with colour printing should be involved with this project." says Julie Dawson, co-curator of the exhibition and Senior Assistant Keeper (Conservation) in the Antiquities Department.

"The technical expertise of the Egyptian artists who worked on this papyrus is outstandingly high. Xaar has provided invaluable sponsorship towards an exhibition that allows us to bring this beautiful document before the public after two years of conservation work," added Helen Strudwick, co-curator and Outreach Officer (Ancient Egypt).

The Book of the Dead of Ramose, a high official who lived in the 12th century BC, was discovered in 1921 by the eminent archaeologist Flinders Petrie in the entrance to a tomb at Sedment in Egypt. Its frail and fragmentary condition has prevented it from being seen ever since it was excavated more than 80 years ago. Thanks to a major conservation and investigation project at the Fitzwilliam Museum, the papyrus will now be on display for a short time only, in order to preserve the vivid colours, allowing visitors a rare insight into the Egyptian world of the dead .

“Xaar’s sponsorship of this exhibition nicely illustrates the juxtaposition of Xaar’s extraordinary high-speed inkjet printing innovation in the 21st century with the lengthy, manual dexterity that was required to produce the stunning hieroglyphs in the 12th century BC,” observes Nigel Berry Finance Director, Xaar.

“In these modern times we spend a great deal of time looking forward, and it is sobering to look back occasionally at the considerable challenges faced by our ancestors. This is Xaar’s way of investing in the past as well as in the future.”

The conservation project has been made possible by the generous support of The Getty Foundation, The Heritage Lottery Fund, The Newton Trust and The Aurelius Charitable Trust.

Image caption: Close-up photograph of hieroglyphic images on the Papyrus; a vignette

About Xaar
Xaar is the world’s leading supplier of industrial inkjet printheads, inks and peripheral equipment to commercial printing and industrial manufacturing markets. Xaar’s innovative technology offers OEM customers and licensees commercial advantage through product differentiation, productivity, and faster time-to-market. Additional information about Xaar is available at

 

About The Fitzwilliam Museum 
The Fitzwilliam Museum houses the University of Cambridge's art collection and is a public museum and art gallery with an international reputation. More than half a million objects and works of art are held in five curatorial departments: Antiquities, Applied Arts, Coins and Medals, Manuscripts and Printed Books and Paintings, Drawings and Prints.

The Fitzwilliam Museum has a wide-ranging programme of temporary exhibitions and events and an award-winning Education Service. The Museum is open Tuesday – Saturday: 10.00 – 17.00, Sundays and Bank Holiday Mondays: 12.00 - 17.00. Admission to the permanent collections and to temporary exhibitions is FREE.


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For more information please contact:
Sharon King-Livesey, Xaar T: 01223 423663 E: Sharon.king-livesey@xaar.co.uk
Samantha Fowler, Splash! PR T: 01580 241177 E: sam@splashpr.co.uk
Fiona Brown/Angela Metcalfe, The Fitzwilliam Museum: T: 01223 332900; E: fitzmuseum-press@lists.cam.ac.uk



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