'The Berlin Painter and His World: Athenian Vase-Painting in the Early Fifth Century BC' at the Princeton University Art Museum
The Berlin Painter was the name given by the great Oxford scholar Sir John Beazley (1885-1970) to an anonymous fifth-century B.C. Athenian vase-painter, whose hand Beazley recognized in over 200 complete or fragmentary vases in collections around the world. Since Beazley’s first published identification of the Berlin Painter in 1911, attributions to this remarkable and prolific artist have grown to over 300 works, and esteem for his refined and elegant style has never waned.
Extraordinary loans from the Antikensammlung, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin; Musée du Louvre, Paris; British Museum, London; Staatliche Antikensammlungen und Glyptothek, Munich; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Kunsthistorisches Museum Vienna; Ashmolean Museum, Oxford; Museum of Fine Arts, Boston; and Vatican Museums, among other institutions, will be included alongside major objects from the Princeton University Art Museum and private collections.
|Greek, Attic, attributed to the Berlin Painter, Red- figure neck-amphora with ridged handles: |
Amazonomachy with Herkales, ca. 490–480 B.C. Ceramic. Antikenmuseum Basel und
Sammlung Ludwig (BS 453) [Credit: Antikenmuseum Basel und Sammlung Ludwig]
The exhibition premieres at the Princeton University Art Museum March 4 through June 11, 2017, before traveling to the Toledo Museum of Art in Ohio from July 7 through Oct. 1, 2017. “This exhibition affords the all-but-unique experience of accessing the world of ancient Greece some 2,500 years ago through the hands of a single, unnamed artist,” notes James Steward, the Nancy A. Nasher-David J. Haemisegger, Class of 1976, Director. “The fruit of a lifetime of thinking and research, the exhibition brings us into very intimate contact with one of the great artists of the ancient world and in doing so reminds us of the power of the individual artist then and now.”
“I am excited that there will be over 50 vases by the Berlin Painter himself in the exhibition,” said curator Michael Padgett. “They vary in size, shape and subject matter, but each is painted in the artist’s distinctive style, even the many animals that appear in his work, including what must be the most adorable dog in all of Greek art.”
Among the many acknowledged masterpieces featured in the exhibition will be the Berlin Painter’s name-vase from Berlin, a red-figure amphora, which incorporates an innovative conflated design of a fawn standing between the Greek god Hermes and a satyr; a stamnos showing the infant Herakles strangling snakes in his crib (a portent of his future powers), from the Louvre; and a hydria of Apollo seated on a winged tripod, from the Vatican.
Accompanying the exhibition will be a major catalogue published by the Princeton University Art Museum, which will trace the trajectory of the Berlin Painter’s career as well as examine the nature and context of his achievement. The catalogue will offer nine essays and 84 object entries by an international group of scholars, as well as an updated catalogue raisonné of works by the Berlin Painter, including several new attributions.
|Greek, Attic, attributed to the Berlin Painter, Black- figure Panathenaic prize amphora: |
Runners, ca. 480–470 B.C. Ceramic. Collection of Gregory Callimanopulos
[Credit: Gregory Callimanopulos]
The Berlin Painter and His World: Athenian Vase-Painting in the Early Fifth Century B.C. has been made possible by generous support from Annette Merle-Smith; the Stavros Niarchos Foundation; the National Endowment for the Arts; the Leon Levy Foundation; Hiram Butler; James and Marilyn Simons; the Stanley J. Seeger ’52 Center for Hellenic Studies, Princeton University; Frederick H. Schultz Jr., Class of 1976; and Susan and John Diekman, Class of 1965. Additional support has been provided by Harlan J. Berk, Ltd.; Raynette and Edward O. Boshell Jr.; Ross and Carol Brownson; Gregory Demirjian and James Demirjian; Davide Erro, Class of 1991; William Suddaby; Stark and Michael Ward; the Department of Classics, Princeton University; the Allen R. Adler, Class of 1967, Exhibitions Fund; Paul and Victoria Hasse; Fortuna Fine Arts; Mr. and Mrs. Jonathan Rosen; and several anonymous donors. Further support has been made possible by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts and by the Partners and Friends of the Princeton University Art Museum.
Source: Princeton University Art Museum [February 14, 2017]