Sunday, January 31, 2010

In the field: The week of the brick

Brooklyn Museum

Tracing mud brick takes skill, patience and lots of scraping and brushing. It is paying off for Ayman and his team, though. By Tuesday, they had already uncovered quite a bit of brick in the center of the square north of the Taharqa Gate. This is surely the enclosure wall into which the Taharqa Gate was set, but we can’t yet connect it to the gate directly.

The lighter area in the center of the photo is the brick as it was on Wednesday. The row of 5 bricks visible here against the center of Chapel D confirms that this chapel was built against the east face of the Taharqa Gate enclosure wall as we’d always assumed. There is more brick in the gap to the north but at a lower level.

Even when you can see bricks clearly, the faint color differences between brick, mortar and surrounding earth can make them hard to photograph, particularly in strong sunlight. A large bedsheet makes a good shade cloth, providing even, subdued light where needed.

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