Dr. Betsy M. Bryan is the Alexander Badawy Professor of Egyptian Art and Archaeology and currently Vice Dean of Humanities and Social Sciences at Johns Hopkins University, where she has taught since 1986. Dr. Bryan specializes in the history, art, and archaeology of the New Kingdom in Egypt, ca. 1600-1000 B.C., with a particular emphasis on the 18th Dynasty, ca. 1550-1300 B.C.
Dr. Bryan's research interests include the organization and techniques of art production as well as the religious and cultural significance of tomb and temple ritual and decoration. As part of this research she studies the social meaning of painting and sculpture in the 18th Dynasty as well as the interrelationships of religion and crafts.
Since 2001 Dr. Bryan has led the Johns Hopkins fieldwork project in the temple complex of the goddess Mut at South Karnak. Her excavation and conservation work focuses on defining the earliest forms of the temple of Mut of Isheru and clarifying the ritual functions of that goddess between approximately 1700 and 1200 B.C.. Excavations within the temple uncovered the Porch of Drunkenness dating to Hatshepsut’s reign, as well as portions of that ruler’s original Mut Temple. Behind the Sacred Lake excavations have identified the support areas to the temple in that period. The nature of the goddess Mut’s cult before 1350 B.C. has been greatly changed by the results of the work, and currently Dr. Bryan is working with an interdisciplinary team of archaeologists, surveyors, geophysical experts, osteologists, and ceramicists to publish the full findings from the site.