Prince Tjau seated on the ground by Egyptian Art

Prince Tjau seated on the ground - Egyptian Art -

Artwork Information

TitlePrince Tjau seated on the ground
ArtistEgyptian Art
Dimensions34.5 cm
Current LocationEgyptian Museum, Cairo

About Prince Tjau seated on the ground

The 6th Dynasty metagreywacke statuette of Prince Tjau depicts him in an atypical pose. Unlike the typical pose of a cross-legged scribe at work, Prince Tjau appears asymmetrical. The statuette is made of Graywacke and is just under 14 inches tall. It can currently be found at the Egyptian Museum in Cairo.

Sunken relief was a common technique in Ancient Egyptian art that was well suited to the country’s bright sunlight. The main figures in reliefs adhered to the same conventions as painting. Though Egyptian imagery is often criticized for being static, formal, and blocky, it served a different purpose. Ancient Egyptian art was designed to represent socioeconomic status and belief systems.

The Seated Scribe statue is an outlier in the world of Ancient Egyptian art, as it was not created to depict a pharaoh. This statue, found in Saqqara, was made of painted limestone with rock crystal, magnesite, and copper/arsenic inlay for the eyes and nipples. The seated figure is not portrayed in an ideal form and appears to have rolls of belly fat. Nevertheless, this realistic portrayal is what sets it apart from other idealized depictions in Ancient Egyptian art.

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