Thesis Defense Announcement

College of Communication and Fine Arts announces the Final Thesis Defense of

Rachel Suddreth

for the Degree of Master of Arts

March 18, 2019 at 10:00 AM in Arts and Communications Building, Room 315 

Advisor: Lorelei Corcoran

Artifact or Art Fake? A Study of the Loop Sistrum (Accession Number: 1994.4.26) in the Art Museum at the University of Memphis

ABSTRACT: The object of this study is a loop sistrum (Accession Number: 1994.4.26) in the Egyptian Collection of the Art Museum at the University of Memphis, a musical instrument used in cultic practice from the New Kingdom to the Roman Period (1539 BCE - 646 CE). During the Summer of 2016, 3-D imaging of the object revealed a lack of definition in the details of the manufacture of the object. This combined with the object's undocumented provenience prior to its purchase by private collector, Glenn Wright, has called the authenticity of the instrument into question. To evaluate the object this thesis employs a stylistic comparison of the object to provienienced examples, an examination of the method of manufacture and corrosion product on the object, and testing by means of pXRF. The combined results of these analyses lead the author to a conclusion of whether or not the instrument is a forgery.