Painting from the Tomb of Sennedjem, Deir el Medina, 19th Dynasty
Painting from the Tomb of Sennedjem, Deir el Medina, 19th Dynasty. Image: Abrilla
© Shutterstock

Recommended age: 18+ years

The story of Ancient Egypt is one of empire, dominance and power struggles between kingdoms, yet we know very little about the origin of its hunger for the flesh of the gods – aka – gold. Where and how did Egypt accumulate its golden riches? The answer to this question lies in ‘Nubia’, Egypt’s southern neighbour, known for its mineral wealth and strong, independent kingdoms.

Join us to explore some of the tactics that Ramses and other pharaohs used to obtain, control, and exploit not just the gold, but also the Nubian people who were its traditional guardians.

Following the chat, you’ll be guided to Ramses & the Gold of the Pharaohs where you’ll receive our exclusive object spotlight tour presented by Egypt specialist Hannah Vogel.

Your ticket includes:

  • A drink on arrival and a chef’s selection of Egyptian-inspired canapés
  • 45-minute talk + Q&A with a leading expert
  • Ticket to Ramses & The Gold of the Pharaohs (valued at $52) and skip the queue for express entry
  • Within the exhibition, enjoy an exclusive in-person spotlight tour by an expert as they share the stories behind their favourite objects
  • Following your tour, enjoy access to Ramses & the Gold of the Pharaohs until the Museum closes at 9pm

Note: Ticket price does NOT include VR experience or exhibition audio guide.

Duration: Approximately 2 hours



Dr Aaron de Souza

Archaeologist Dr Aaron de Souza
Dr Aaron de Souza is an archaeologist specialising the material culture of Ancient Egypt and Nubia and he has a keen interest in ancient cultural diversity, complexity, and interconnectedness. Image: Supplied
© Aaron de Souza

Dr Aaron de Souza is an archaeologist specialising the material culture of Ancient Egypt and Nubia with a keen interest in ancient cultural diversity, complexity, and interconnectedness. After obtaining his PhD from Macquarie University, he spent four years as a postdoctoral researcher at the Austrian Academy of Sciences in Vienna, funded by prestigious grants from European funding agencies.

Aaron has worked on numerous excavations throughout Egypt for more than a decade, most notably with international missions at Tell Edfu, Hierakonpolis, and Aswan. He is a widely published author of a monograph and several articles and has been invited to give keynote lectures on ancient Nubia at some of the world most prestigious institutions. Aaron is a co-founding editor of the journal, Interdisciplinary Egyptology, and is committed to making Egyptological research accessible for academic and general audiences alike.


Dr Julien Cooper

Dr Julien Cooper is a specialist of ancient Egypt and Nubia.
Dr Julien Cooper is a specialist of ancient Egypt and Nubia. Image: Supplied
© Julien Cooper

Dr Julien Cooper is a specialist of ancient Egypt and Nubia. He was awarded his PhD from Macquarie University, and thereafter lectured and researched at Yale, Oxford, and Beijing Normal Universities, recently returning to Australia and being awarded a Future Fellowship at Macquarie University. Julien is the director of an archaeological expedition in the Sudanese Eastern Desert, The Atbai Survey Project.


Dr Craig Barker (Host)

Dr Craig Barker is an archaeologist and museum professional.
Dr Craig Barker is an archaeologist and museum professional. Image: Supplied
© Craig Barker

Dr Craig Barker is an archaeologist and museum professional. He has a PhD in Mediterranean archaeology and is the Director of the University of Sydney’s Paphos Theatre Archaeological Project excavating the World Heritage listed site of Nea Paphos in Cyprus. He is the Head of Public Engagement at the Chau Chak Wing Museum. He has archaeological experience in Greece, Cyprus, Turkey and Australia and hosts the podcast Object Matters. He has published widely on Cypriot archaeology, ancient theatre, amphorae and the ancient wine trade, public archaeology, museum education and the history of archaeology.


Hannah Vogel (Spotlight Tour Guide)

Hannah Vogel
Hannah Vogel is a PhD candidate and sessional academic at the Department of History and Archaeology, Macquarie University. Image: Supplied
© Hannah Voge

Hannah Vogel is a PhD candidate and sessional academic at the Department of History and Archaeology, Macquarie University. Her PhD is on disability in the ancient world. Her research interests include health and welling, bioarchaeology, paleopathology and Egyptology. Her work seeks interdisciplinary communication between humanities and science, especially in bioarchaeology, history, and disability studies.

She is an advocate for accessibility and has worked in public outreach, education and inclusive pedagogies. Hannah is also centre manager of the Centre for Ancient Cultural Heritage and Environment (CACHE) and a member of the Macquarie Theban Tombs archaeological field season in Egypt early 2024.


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