The Minister of State for Antiquities, Dr. Zahi Hawass, announced that the news published in the media about the use of the Egyptian Museum, Cairo, to promote an American clothing line in his name remains unfounded.
Dr. Hawass added that the photos used in the promotional campaign were taken October 7, 2010, in New York City at the King Tutankhamun exhibition, and complied with all safety measure requirements. Hawass asserted that none of the authentic antiquities were handled during the shoot, as they served only as background, while only replica pieces were used by the models.
James Weber, the American photographer who took the photos, said in his interview with Danny Ramadan in the “Art in Revolution” Blog, that none of the authentic objects were touched in the shooting process and the chair and the bench used in some photos were replicas. Weber added that there was also some Photoshop involved in some of the images, such as the photo that shows a model with his foot against a wall, which appears to be decorated with hieroglyphic text. Weber also asserted that Dr. Hawass did not attend the shooting, which occurred in New York City.
Dr. Hawass stated that Tutankhamun’s chair is one of the unique objects prohibited from travelling abroad in any exhibition. Hawass stated that by the terms of his agreement with the clothing production company, his profits from this line will be donated to the 57357 Children’s Cancer Hospital in Cairo. A letter to Dr. Sherif Abul Naga, Director of the hospital, was sent to him by Dr. Hawass clarifying these arrangements.