A Lower Italian terracotta antefix with the polychrome-painted head of Athena, 4th – 3rd century B.C.
Works of Art, Antiquities | A83kua | Live auction | 712 Lots
DescriptionThe shield on one side featuring the head of the goddess Athena, carved in half relief. Wearing her characteristic helmet, the goddess looks straight ahead with a stern expression. The naturalistic movement of her curls falling down on each side, some twisted around each other, forms a sharp contrast to the severity of the divine countenance. A palmette frieze border resembling a nimbus enclosing the head on the sides and top, the bottom of the neck resting on a strip embellished with a painted egg-and-dart motif.
The front of the antefix was painted in colour. The original reddish-pink hue can still be seen on large portions of the face and neck, the white eyeballs have dark painted pupils, while the helmet stands out with its light background.
The elongated side elements of the conch have been lost, the antefix broken off above the forehead and expertly repaired. The missing original reinforcing bar in clay on the back replaced by a metal rod. Exceptionally impressive architectural structure, probably designed for a temple of the goddess Athena. Dimensions from 20.5 to 28 x 36 x 37 cm.
Provenance: From a German private collection. Previously part of the South West German collection belonging to Dr. H. Schaeffer, who acquired it in the Swiss art trade before 1970. Comes with a certificate issued by Galerie Puhze, Freiburg, dated 2009.
Condition: II - Questions about the lot?