Fayum mummy portraits: the earliest painted portraits

I’ve been reading John Berger’s book, The Shape of a Pocket. In it there’s an essay on the Fayum portraits. During the 1st to 3rd century AD in Egypt, painted panel portraits (more commonly referred to as Fayoum or Fayum portraits) were bandaged over the heads of mummies. These astonishing portraits depict the inhabitants of Greco-Roman ancient Egypt in exacting detail. They were finely executed in a beeswax-based paint on wood or stuccoed linen. Continue reading “Fayum mummy portraits: the earliest painted portraits”