The Institute of Fine Arts is engaged in an ambitious, multi-dimensional,
and long-term archaeological research program, under permit from the
Egyptian Supreme Council of Antiquities, to investigate the history of north
Abydos, an area the ancient Egyptians viewed as having an extraordinary
significance. This program is comprised of a series of major interrelated
initiatives focused on a number of components of the site. The aim of the
Institute¹s efforts is to build a comprehensive understanding of the full
range of ancient activity at the site, how this changed over time, how the
meanings attached to the site were expressed and evolved, and how Abydos
relates to the broader context of Egyptian history and culture.
The field research program at Abydos represents a significant resource for Institute of Fine Arts students. Students have the opportunity to gain field experience through participation in a variety of activities at Abydos, including excavation, survey and mapping, collections management, documentation, and analysis, as well as architectural, archaeological, and objects conservation. In appropriate instances, doctoral students may have the opportunity to undertake, within the framework of the Institute’s overall field program at Abydos, independent research that serves as the basis for the Ph.D. dissertation.
The Institute has the leading role in a field program co-sponsored with the University of Pennsylvania Museum and the Peabody Museum of Yale University (as the Pennsylvania-Yale-Institute of Fine Arts Expedition to Abydos, co-directed by David O’Connor and William Kelly Simpson, emeritus of Yale), with Brown University as an associated institution. The Institute’s field program is led by Director David O’Connor, with Matthew Adams of the IFA as Associate Director and Field Director, and Laurel Bestock, of Brown as Assistant Director.