I shall be presenting a paper at the Egypt Exploration Society BEC4 this September in Manchester. Details of the event can be found here https://www.ees.ac.uk/Event/bec. The abstract for my paper, which is currently scheduled for the afternoon of Saturday 8th, is as follows:
Affordances and entanglement—a new perspective of the sacred landscape of Late Period/Early Ptolemaic North Saqqara
The archaeological remains at North Saqqara represent the principal necropolis of Memphis. During the Late Period, the sacred animal cults experienced an apogee at the funerary site, which became a nexus for the burials of millions of sacred animals which were being mummified and deposited in large subterranean funerary complexes on an industrial scale. The sacred animal monuments of North Saqqara have historically been investigated and published either in isolation or within small groups of spatially related features. They have rarely been compared within their wider landscape setting, or their relationship with the topography upon which they are imposed considered. Connective networks of movement both leading to, and between, monuments have similarly received little consideration.
Through the implementation of three-dimensional modelling, the construction of an innovative georeferenced environment of spatially-rich data that are accessible from a variety of perspectives has been realised. Construction of this type of three-dimensional landscape representation permits new approaches to landscape studies for environments that may no longer be extant or accessible. The Digital Saqqara project has applied such an approach to develop an holistic understanding of a complex ritual landscape. The utilisation of digital technologies was underpinned by theoretical analytic techniques through the application of the relational theory of affordances, and entanglement, never before applied to Egyptological studies. Informed by the theoretical framework, the project has investigated the Late Period/Early Ptolemaic monuments; their circumstance within the funerary landscape of Saqqara, their temporal association with other monuments, and their influence of, and by, pathways of movement through the landscape. This has permitted a new perspective of the sacred landscape and the place of the monuments within. This summary paper aims to present the project’s findings.