Skip to Content

Conversation: Displaying Ancient Egypt in Chicago

Thurs, May 2 | 6:00–7:00


Admission actions

Ancient Egyptian

Chicago is home to three institutions with significant Egyptian antiquities collections: the Art Institute, the Field Museum, and the ISAC Museum (formerly the Oriental Institute). Since the 1890s, these three collections have developed alongside each other, presenting generations of museum visitors with opportunities to explore the vibrant art, history, and culture of the land of the pharaohs. Join curators Ashley Arico of the Art Institute, Foreman Bandama of the Field Museum, and Marc Maillot of the ISAC Museum as they discuss evolving approaches to displaying ancient Egypt in Chicago.

This program is generously supported by the Mickie Silverstein Endowment Fund.

About the Speakers

Ashley Arico serves as the Art Institute’s associate curator of ancient Egyptian art in Arts of Africa. Prior to joining the Art Institute, she completed archaeological fieldwork at the Temple of the Goddess Mut at Karnak (Luxor) and held positions at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; the Walters Art Museum; and the Johns Hopkins Archaeological Museum. Arico received her PhD in Near Eastern studies with a focus in ancient Egyptian art and archaeology from the Johns Hopkins University, where her research examined Egyptian stone statuary excavated in the Levant as the evidence for interactions across borders during antiquity. Current projects include a new catalogue of the Art Institute’s collection of ancient Egyptian art and a study exploring the intersection of art and writing production in the late 1st millennium BCE Egypt. Her research interests include object biographical studies of ancient Egyptian artifacts, the history of collecting ancient Egyptian art in the late 19th and early 20th centuries, and approaches to presenting ancient collections in modern museum settings.

Foreman Bandama is assistant curator at the Field Museum’s Negaunee Integrative Research Center. An archaeologist of the African Iron Age, he specializes in preindustrial ceramics, glass beads, archaeometallurgy, and heritage studies and explores the history, innovation, and technology of tin and bronze metallurgy in southern Africa. His work draws liberally from both African theory and his personal experiences a product of a rural crafting Tsonga family from Zimbabwe. Bandama is particularly interested in African innovations and achievements relating to complex societies and their interactions with the outside world. His long-term projects include the study of class and state formation at Great Zimbabwe and some of the key polities in southern Africa. He received his doctoral thesis from the University of Cape Town.

Marc Maillot is the associate director and chief curator of the ISAC Museum and an associate member of the UMR 8167 “Orient et Méditerranée” (French National Research Center-CNRS). He also serves as a courtesy assistant professor in Anthropology at the University of Central Florida. Previously, Maillot conducted seminars on late antiquity urbanism and architecture at Paris-Sorbonne University and Shendi University, Sudan. His research interests include vernacular architecture, both in Egypt and Sudan, Meroitic iconography, social anthropology, and urbanism in antiquity. He has worked on archaeological sites abroad since 2007, with a special focus on the Middle Nile Valley. His field experience also includes the archaeology of Roman settlements in France, particularly on the shores of the Marne River. Currently, his research focuses on the Osirian cult practice in the Meroitic royal pageantry, architectural representation in the iconography of the Middle Nile Valley, and late antiquity Sudanese towns as production machines for a centralized power based at Meroe.

Please note that this is an in-person event that takes place at the museum.

If you have any questions about programming, please reach out to

Closed captioning will be available for this program. For questions related to accessibility accommodations, please email


Sign up for our enewsletter to receive updates.

Learn more

Image actions