Founded ca. 270 BC- abandoned ca. AD 650 The village of Karanis is located in the northern part of the Fayum Oasis, south-west of today’s Calro; the modern name of the place is Kom Aushim, easily to be reached on the highway to the Fayum from Cairo. After approx. 60 km from the pyramids of Giza, you see the remains of ancient Karanis on your left-hand side. Like many other villages in the Fayoum, Karanis was
Mummy portraits or Fayum portraits are the most astonishing body of painting to have come to us from the ancient world, they are remarkable for their social importance and for their quality as art.
In the late 1880s some mysterious portraits started to reach Western Europe and the United States of America. They came from Egypt’s Fayoum. A large collection was possessed by an Austrian man, Theodor Graf but the better documented ones were found at Hawara by the British archaeologist , W.M. Flinders Petrie.
” Fayoum Portraits ” is the name which has given to describe them because more have been found in the Fayoum Oasis than anywhere else in Egypt.
In technique ; some are painted in encaustic and some in tempera; some are on panel and some on linen ; some show heads only and some entire figures. Some seem to have been painted from life and hung on the wall in frames.