Sunday, 23 August 2015

Karibu to the 2015 conservation season at Olduvai Gorge!

Ignacio de la Torre,  Renata Peters and Norah Moloney have recently returned from Olduvai Gorge. The 2015 field season has produced exciting results that will contribute to a better understanding of the origins of the Acheulean at Olduvai Gorge, the theme of this ERC-funded project  based at the UCL Institute of Archaeology. As usual, work was led by the Olduvai Geochronology Archaeology Project (OGAP).

The 2015 conservation team was again supervised by Renata Peters and Dani Mainoya (conservator and curator at Natural History Museum in Arusha, Tanzania). They were assisted by conservator Elisabet Diaz and IoA conservation students Abigail Duckor, Anna Funke and Jan Cutajar. The team was complemented by Tanzanian apprentices Isack Faustin Lyimo and Ngonyani Lihuni, and several students attending this year's field school. 

Conservators working with OGAP aim to make Olduvai an international reference for in situ conservation excellence, besides making it sustainable and socially relevant. We include both tangible and intangible features in our decision-making processes and use the world’s best materials whilst also trying to develop local resources. This year our work was focused on consolidating fragile fossils and lithic material, removing matrices,  general collections care and building local capacities.  

The 2015 OGAP's season had one of its largest groups ever (credit M. Pante). 
One of the configurations of the 2015 conservation team, with our bead working master Nairoshi Zebeday at the centre. Jastin Mahhu, Abigail Duckor, Anna Funke, Lucy Mshana, Naishoki Paul, Nairoshi Zebeday, Renata Peters, Jan Cutajar, Sekwai Babai, Eli Diaz, Neil, Isack Faustin Lyimo, Ngonyani Lihuni, Dani Mainoya and Edwin Paresso. 

Here is the core of the 2015 conservation team: Isack Faustin Lyimo, Dani Mainoya, Zackarias (who took care of our precious finds and equipment), Abigail Duckor, Renata Peters, Ngonyani Lihuni, Jan Cutajar, Matimba Leakey (a morning wasn't complete without his visit), Anna Funke, Eli Diaz and Jesuit Temba.

Click on the images below to see more details about our work in Olduvai Gorge.

Very busy conservation students (@the Laetoli Lab).

Processing finds @the OGAP Lab.
We were ready for anything!
Conservation team preparing CDD in the Leakey Camp. 

IoA conservation students working in a trench @ FC. 
Matrix removal with Dani Maynoia.

IoA conservation student Jan Cutajar very busy @FC.

Preparing CDD in the trenches. 

Eli Diaz getting ready to apply CDD.
Yes, we like life in the trenches -  @ FCW.
And finally, here is Ignacio de la Torre taking points while
conservation was being done.

Conservation was kindly supported by OGAP, the UCL Institute of Archaeology and the Zibby Garnett Travel Fellowship. UCL students also counted on the kind support of private funders. Our utmost thanks to all!

All images by Renata F. Peters and/or OGAP. Please do not use without permission. 

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