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A Newly Acquired Historical Greek Vase | by Cleveland Museum of Artwork | CMA Thinker | Could, 2023


With slight variations, this band encircles the vase, connecting the entrance, the again, and the 2 facet panels, which the painter has animated with profuse palmettes and tendrils surrounding the handles (fig. 2b). Three draped younger males occupy the reverse, the one at proper gesturing again towards the opposite two (fig. 2c). Above his outstretched arm is a small wine jug, connecting to the livelier komos of the opposite facet.

Comparable komos scenes seem on a number of different stamnoi attributed to the Kleophon Painter. One within the State Hermitage Museum (Saint Petersburg, Russia; BAPD 215147) bears the inscription Kleophon kalos (“Kleophon is gorgeous”), lending a reputation to the in any other case nameless painter.

Half of a bigger group often known as the Polygnotans (after its chief, Polygnotos), the Kleophon Painter was one of the vital vase-painters working in Periklean Athens, when the good buildings of the Athenian Acropolis have been being constructed. Notably, their vases usually present the affect of the sculptural fashion of the Parthenon, the well-known temple of Athena constructed between 447 and 432 BCE. That is most obvious within the solemn sacrificial procession on a outstanding volute-krater now within the Museo Archeologico Nazionale di Ferrara (BAPD 215141).

However the painter created far more vigorous figures as effectively, within the decrease frieze of the volute-krater and on the stamnoi now in Cleveland, Saint Petersburg, and elsewhere. Regardless of the very completely different material, a number of of the musicians and revelers on the Cleveland stamnos might be favorably in contrast with figures from the north frieze of the Parthenon, accomplished beneath the course of the sculptor Pheidias. The bearded reveler on the stamnos, for instance, strikes a pose fairly like that of an almost nude parade marshal gesturing dramatically behind a chariot on a frieze block within the Acropolis Museum in Athens (fig. 3).

Determine 3. Part of the north frieze of the Parthenon (Block 23 [XXIII]). Classical interval (442–438 BCE). Marble from Penteli; 101 x 110 cm. The Acropolis Museum, Ακρ. 859

Earlier than this vase was acquired, the CMA assortment didn’t embrace a single stamnos nor any vases by the Kleophon Painter. Though komos scenes seem on a number of different CMA vases, all date earlier and none has the class of this stamnos, its delicate figures so effectively harmonized with its form. So, in quite a few methods — date, form, painter, iconography — the stamnos has added to the CMA assortment, transporting guests throughout time and house to the world of Classical Athens.

However the vase can inform different tales, too, as a glance beneath its foot suggests (fig. 4). Many of the marks seen right here appear to match the recorded fashionable historical past of the vase (listed beneath “Provenance” in Assortment On-line, with corresponding publications in “Citations”).

Determine 4. Underside of the CMA’s Crimson-Determine Stamnos

The most important mark, in thick black paint, could possibly be “080,” the earliest recorded variety of the vase, quantity 80 in a listing of Greek vases and different antiquities from the gathering of Henri De Morgan provided on the market on the Fifth Avenue Artwork Galleries in New York Metropolis on January 16, 1909. Right here the vase is illustrated, described, and stated to be from Southern Italy, although with no additional details about its discovery or findspot. Thomas Barlow Walker, a Minnesota lumber baron and artwork collector, bought the vase on this 1909 sale, and the 2 marks studying “WF2” should discuss with its quantity in his Walker Basis. Equally, the pink “09.6” corresponds to an previous accession quantity on the Walker Artwork Middle, the Minneapolis establishment Walker based. The stamnos spent greater than a century in Minneapolis, generally on show, till 2016. Then, with the Walker’s focus firmly set on fashionable and up to date artwork, it deaccessioned the stamnos and some different vases.

Now, in 2023, the most recent chapter within the lengthy story of this outstanding vase has begun. Safely put in in its new house in Cleveland, surrounded by vases and different artworks made in historical Greece, this stamnos adorned by the Kleophon Painter almost 2,500 years in the past awaits its latest admirers.


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