Fayum portraits

DEFINITION

A Romano-Egyptian portrait painted with encaustic on cartonnage, a linen mummy case, or a wood panel. For thousands of years Egyptian religious beliefs called for funerary portraits; in Pharaonic times these representations were very formulaic. When Egypt came under Roman influence during the 1st through 3rd centuries CE, the Roman taste for highly individualized portraiture altered the style of the Egyptian mummy portrait. These portraits were either created during the subject's life, or just after death, and fitted into the mummy wrappings, above the face of the deceased. They are often referred to as Fayum portraits because many examples were found in the Fayum region of Egypt. Fayum is about one hundred kilometers south of Cairo.(pr. fay-YəM)Examples:Roman, Fayum, Egypt, 100-125 CE, Attributed to the Isidora Master, Mummy Portrait of a Woman, Isidora, encaustic and gilt on a wooden panel wrapped in linen, 13 1/4 x 6 3/4 inches (33.6 x 17.2 cm), J. Paul Getty Museum, Malibu, CA.Egypt, second century CE (Roman Period), Portrait of a Boy, encaustic on wood, 15 3/8 x 7 1/2 inches (39 x 19 cm), Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY. See Egyptian art. Egyptian (Hawara, Roman Period, second century CE), Funerary Portrait of a Young Girl, encaustic on wood, height 15 3/4 inches, Cleveland Museum of Art.Also see Egyptian art.

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