Page 1

Galerie Chenel

REFLECTION

egyptian, greek and roman sculptures


REFLECTION

MMX IX


The title Reflection was chosen to work on a number of levels.

Beyond our initial perception of intrinsic beauty, each of the works included in this catalogue has called for much contemplation and study. Antiquities not only hold up a mirror to former times, they are also a permanent source of inspiration.

These sculptures have journeyed through the ages and have many stories to tell us. There are tales of illustrious former owners who treasured them in their private collections, interpretations of their mythological symbols and sometimes even secrets contained in ancient restorations.

When photographing these sculptures we sought to bring their three-dimensional beauty to life on the page. By intentionally letting the sculptures fade into the darkness, the very essence of each work seems revealed through the light reflecting off the surface of the marble.

Our Reflection catalogue is the result of extensive research into our latest acquisitions. By striving to publish as much documentation and as many images as possible, our investigations are as constantly demanding as they are enriching. More than just inviting you to discover these timeless and aesthetically beautiful objects, we want to take you on a journey into the past by exploring each sculpture on a deeper and more fulfilling level.

We are eternally grateful to all those who support us in our work. To Alain, Chantal, the indispensable Violaine and Antoinette, our very own Vincent, Tal, Professor Olivier, Jรถrg and last but not least Florent: thank you all for being by our side.

Gladys, Adrien and Ollivier


TWISTED COLUMN R OM A N, 1 ST – 2 ND C ENT U RY AD G REY V EIN ED BIGIO CHIARO MAR B LE

HEIGHT: 142,5 CM.

DIAMETER: 19 CM.

PR O V EN AN C E: FORMER COLLECTIO N O F WR IG H T S . LU DIN G TO N ( 1 9 0 0

1991)

AC Q U IR ED PR IO R TO 1 9 73 . FORM ER COLLECTION OF T H E S AN TA B AR B A RA MU S EU M O F A R T , U S A .

This elegant column is sculpted in a veined grey marble called bigio chiaro, from either Greece or Asia Minor. It is a spirally-fluted column, with the shaft wrapped in a helix pattern creating an interplay of highly graphical ascending lines. At the top, it culminates in a small astragal – an ornamental moulding made up of a rounded surface and a flat plane which creates a visual break as the spiral ascends. This column was part of the collection of the philanthropist and lover of antiquities Wright S. Ludington (1900 – 1991). At Wright S. Ludington’s Villa Hesperides, Montecito, prior to 1973.


A photograph from the Ludington archives at the Santa Barbara Museum of Arts shows our column at Villa Hesperides, his Montecito residence. The column must have been acquired by 1973 at the latest, the year Ludington sold the villa. It was then moved to October Hill, his new house in Montecito, before being bequeathed along with the majority of the pieces in his collection, to the Santa Barbara Museum of Arts, of which he was one of the founders.

Wright S. Ludington in his October Hill villa, Montecito, with the column in the background, after 1973.


SCULPTOR’S MODEL E G YP TIA N , P TOL E MAIC PERIOD, CIRCA 3 8 0 – 3 0 0 B C

LIMES T O N E

HEIGHT: 10 CM.

WIDTH: 10 CM.

DEPTH: 3 CM.

PR O V EN AN C E: FORMER PRIV ATE COL LEC TIO N O F B ER N AR D DA YDÉ ( 1 9 2 1 – 1 9 8 6 ) , SET DE SIG NER AND ARTIST IC DIREC T O R O F T H E FR EN C H N A T IO N A L L Y R I C THEATRES FRO M 1 9 71 TO 1 9 77, PAR IS , FR AN C E. A G IFT FR O M KIN G FA RO U K IN 1 9 5 0 .

This delicate face carved in limestone is a

beginnings of a smile. A square, flat-backed

sculptor’s model depicting a Pharaoh. The

decorative structure emerges from the

royal head is wearing a nemes decorated

head, providing a sort of framework around

with the uraeus, a cobra protecting the

the face of the Pharaoh.

sovereigns

The

This type of object is called a sculptor’s

headpiece is topped by two curled rams’

model and is generally carved from softer

horns, linking the Pharaoh to Khnum, the

stone such as limestone. They served as

ram-headed god believed to have created

trial runs made by sculptors when working

the human body. The Pharaoh is shown in

to order. They would then present their

his youth, with idealised features. The eyes

work to their client as evidence of their

are delicately carved in an almond shape

stone-carving skills.

from

their

enemies.

while the mouth, with fine lips, has the


As with our sculpture, we often find a grid on the back which enabled the artist to study the proportions of each part of the face and the headpiece (ill. 1). Sculptors’ models could also be used as works for artists to teach their pupils, and indeed some models that have been discovered have errors, particularly in terms of the proportions, thus proving this pedagogical purpose. Some sculptures found in temples

Ill. 3. Sculptor’s model, 30th dynasty, reign of Nectanebo II, limestone, H.: 10 cm. The State Museum of Egyptian Art, Munich, inv. No. AS 2045. Ill. 4. Sculptor’s model, 30th dynasty, limestone, H.: 9.2 cm. August Kestner Museum, Hanover, inv. No. 1951.109.

also point to the fact that they could be used as objects of worship for deities.

Our sculpture shows incredibly fine workmanship and is an exceptional example of Egyptian art from the Ptolemaic period. The features of the Pharaoh represented here and the particular shape of the uraeus link it with sculptures dating from the time of Nectanebo II, who reigned from 362 to 343 BC. Closely related examples are

Ill. 1. Sculptor’s model with a grid on the back, 30th dynasty, reign of Nectanebo II, limestone, H.: 9 cm. Private collection.

in the Metropolitan Museum of Arts as well as in The State Museum of Egyptian Art in Munich and the August Kestner Museum in Hanover (ill. 2 to 4).

Ill. 2. Sculptor’s model depicting Nectanebo II, 30th dynasty, limestone, H.: 30 cm. Metropolitan Museum of Arts, New York, inv. No. 2000.637.


This sculptor’s model was part of the collection of Bernard Daydé (1921 – 1986), a former set designer and artistic director of the French National Lyric Theatres from 1971 to 1977. After carrying out an artistic mission in Egypt in 1949, he received this sculpture as gift from King Farouk, who presented it in person in Paris in 1950.

Back of our sculpture with lines for the proportions.


MONOPODIUM R OM AN, 2 ND C ENT U RY AD

MAR B LE

HEIGHT: 75,5 CM.

DEPTH: 16 CM.

WIDTH: 13 CM.

PR O V EN AN C E: SOTHEBY’S LOND ON, ANONYMOUS SALE , 1 3 – 1 4 JU LY 1 9 8 1 , LO T 28 8 . FORMER AUS TR ALIA N PRIV A T E C O LLEC T IO N .

This elegant marble sculpture in the shape

leaning head – is a characteristic sequence

of a ram is part of a piece of furniture. A

in Roman creations from the imperial era.

trapezophorus designates a table leg, while

The sinewy profile of our ram softens the

ours is more precisely a monopodium – a

verticality of the support that it is backed

single foot which generally supported a

onto. From the leg to the head, the creature

round tabletop, with a small console. The

features decorative incisions creating the

back is not sculpted, indicating that it was

impression of fur. Acanthus leaves unfurl

placed against a wall.

along the side in a motif that is recurrently

Our monopodium is decorated with a

found in the Roman decorative repertoire,

protome in the shape of a ram, as indicated

both

by its horns, with its head leaning down

capitals and in items of furniture such as

onto its curved chest and culminating in a

monopodiums (ill. 1).

bovine hoof. The tripartite composition of the work – a single animal leg, full chest and

in

architecture

in

Corinthian


At the beginning of the Empire, chimeric

sculptures were complemented by glass

animals – which were symbols of the end

and silverware displayed on the table tops

of one era and the beginning of another

with great ostentation. They could also be

and thus of a change in regime – became

used as supports for statuettes of deities

a regular feature in the decorative arts.

and domestic objects of worship. Our

Among the creatures represented on table

monopodium is thus the perfect illustration

legs, griffins appeared regularly as well

of how luxury developed in the decoration

as panthers (ill. 2). Rams like ours, on the

of Roman abodes.

other hand, are a lot rarer. With their large spiral horns and bellicose nature, they are the incarnation of the force of nature. A similar example of monopodium in the shape of a goat can be found in the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston (ill. 3). The stylised, very curved, treatment of our monopodium is far removed from the naturalism of the examples cited above. It most likely hails from the Eastern Mediterranean and

Ill. 1. Monopodium in the shape of a panther, Roman,

illustrates the decorative taste of the

1st –2nd century, marble, H.: 78 cm. British Museum,

easternmost provinces of the Empire, which

London, inv. No. 1856,1226. 1678.

can be seen in the elegant carved swirls running up the foot and the animal’s body.

Ill. 2. Monopodium in the shape of a panther, Roman, late 1st – early 2nd century, marble, H.: 67 cm. British Museum, London, inv. No. 1805,0703. 454.

During the Hellenistic period, table legs were already considered as works of art in their own right. Following on from this heritage, the Romans from the Republican era onwards developed the same taste for richness in their interior decors. Trapezophori were a means of showing off the rank and wealth of aristocratic Roman families. These highly decorative

Ill. 3. Monopodium in the shape of a goat, Roman, 1st – 2nd century AD, H.: 89 cm. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, inv. No. 2010.372.


STANDING PRIEST E GYP TIA N , M IDDL E KINGDOM, 1 2 TH DYNAS T Y,

CIRCA 1 991

–

1 78 6 BC

B AS A LT

HEIGHT: 28 CM.

WIDTH: 11 CM.

DEPTH: 10 CM.

PR O V EN AN C E: FORM ER PARISIAN PRIV ATE C O LLEC T IO N O F PIER RE DER O ME, S I N C E 1 9 6 3 . THEN BEL G IAN PR IV A T E C O LLEC T IO N .

This magnificent statue depicts a priest

outsized

fingers.

This

is

typical

of

standing in a position of respect and

sculptures of priests in the 12th dynasty

prayer. The arms are symmetrical along

and can also be seen on the statue of

the body, with the hands laying flat

the head of the prophets Amenemhat

on the loincloth which is long and tied

Ankh at the Louvre Museum in Paris

at the waist, while the torso is naked. The

(ill. 1). Another characteristic element

pectoral muscles are shown in cursory

is the fact that the loincloth is very

fashion, which may be the result of the

geometrically shaped, forming a triangle

hardness of the basalt stone that was

at the front. A statue on display at the

used. The back rest was engraved with

Allard Pierson Museum in Amsterdam

hieroglyphs which remain partly visible.

shows similar traits to ours (ill. 2). It

The remains of an offering prayer can be

features the same exaggerated limbs and

seen in Hotep, but the deity to which it is

geometric garment as the depictions of

addressed is unknown.

Pharaoh Amenemhat III, although his

This sculpture is characterised by its

loincloth is flat and not pointed at the

very long arms and imposing hands with

front (ill. 3).


Ill. 1. Statue of the head of the prophets Amenemhat

Ill. 3. Statue of King Amenemhet III (1843 – 1797 BC)

Ankh, Middle Kingdom, 12th dynasty, sandstone.

standing, found in the temple of Ptah in Memphis,

Louvre Museum, Paris, inv. No. E11053.

granodiorite, H.: 191 cm. Egyptian Museum at the

Ill. 2. Statue of the priest Seneb, Middle Kingdom,

Staatliche Museen zu Berlin, inv. No. AM1121.

12th dynasty,

shale.

Allard

Pierson

Museum,

Amsterdam, inv. No. APM 309.

During

the

Middle

Kingdom,

local

temples changed in status and began to house statuettes of individuals that were previously placed in tombs. Funeral rites then began to take place in temples, which brought with it the development of a new form of art and the appearance of different models of sculpture, as can be seen in our work. The upright position with the hands laid flat was also used to depict Pharaohs, as was the case with Amenemhat III. Indeed, the depiction of him as a priest was a form of public propaganda, placing him as an intermediary between the mortals and the gods.


OSCILLUM R OM A N, 1 ST – 2 ND C ENT U RY AD

MAR B LE

HEIGHT: 19 CM.

WIDTH: 14 CM.

DEPTH: 4 CM.

PR O V EN AN C E: FORM ER FRENCH PRIV ATE C O LLEC TIO N O F R O G ER PEYREFFIT E ( 1 9 0 7

20 0 0 ) ,

PARIS , A C Q U IR ED B EFO RE 1 9 72 .

This magnificent marble fragment is an

The other side features a bearded satyr

oscillum sculpted on both sides. One side is

delicately sculpted in bas-relief in a wide

decorated with a theatrical mask depicting

frame. The face is also in profile, but this

a maenad in relief while the other is

time is grotesque: the nose is exaggerated,

sculpted with a satyr in bas-relief.

the forehead protruding, the eyebrows

The mask on the main side is a smiling

seemingly in a frown and also entirely

face in profile, with long locks of curly

hiding the eyes of the satyr.

hair tumbling down behind the ears and along the neck. Each lock of hair has been carved with a drill and shows great detail, demonstrating the considerable skill of the sculptor. The maenad is wearing a tall diadem, the like of which is frequently seen on the companions of Bacchus. Her face has rounded cheeks, almond-shaped eyes, a straight nose and a dimpled chin.

Roger Peyrefitte (1907 – 2 0 0 0 )


The beard is long and pointed, while the flowing hair features locks curling up over the forehead, giving the satyr a savage quality. This type of motif is found in other oscilla of similar formats, such as those preserved in the Museo Nazionale Romano in Rome, one in the Museum of Dresden or another in the

Ill. 4. Oscilla in A Dictionary of Roman and Greek

Antiquities (Rich, Payot & Rivages, Paris, 1995, p. 442).

Kunsthistorisches Museum in Vienna

Ill. 5. Decor of a villa with a rectangular oscillum,

(ill. 1 to 3).

1st century AD, fresco, H.: 162 cm. Miho Museum, Shiga.

Oscilla were originally objects designed to avert evil influences and hung in trees out in the fields. According to Virgil (Georgics, Book II, pp. 381 – 392), the «oscillating» Ill. 1. Back of a rectangular oscillum, Roman, 1st century AD, marble. Museo Nazionale Romano, Rome.

movement of the object, whose more sculpted side was turned to face the

Ill. 2. Oscillum with theatre masks, Roman,

field to be used for crops, was a way of

70 AD, marble, H.: 32 cm. Museum of Dresden,

encouraging growth and warding off bad

inv. No. Hm 212.

luck (ill. 4). Later, these sculptures were no longer solely attached to trees but also hung between pairs of peristyle columns in gardens or illustrated in frescoes in houses, most notably in Pompeii and Herculaneum (ill. 5).

Ill.

3.

Two

sides

of

an

oscillum,

Roman,

2 century AD, marble, H.: 32 cm. Kunsthistorisches nd

Museum, Vienna, inv. No. I 119.


By then they had become purely decorative elements which were in fashion from the 1st century AD for around a hundred years. There are three types of oscillum: circular, pelta or crescent-shaped, and rectangular. Ours is rectangular and was likely placed in garden on a finely wrought column, much like the oscilla found in the House of the Golden Cupids in Pompeii (ill. 6). From an ornamental point of view, the oscilla – like the room they are housed in – are decorated with satyr masks, scenes and faces of divinities generally linked to the Dionysian universe.

Peyrefitte’s apartment in 1973, with our oscillum in the background.

Publication: R. Peyrefitte, Un Musée de l’A mour

(«A Museum of Love»), Éditions du Rocher, 1972, p. 24.

Ill. 6. Garden of the House of the Golden Cupids, Regio 6, Pompeii.

Our oscillum was part of the collection of Roger Peyrefitte (1907 – 2000), a famous French author of the 20th century. He was also a lover of ancient art, whose collection was renowned for its great quality.


HEAD OF HERMES R OM A N , L AT E 1 ST C ENT U RY AD

MAR B LE

HEIGHT: 28 CM.

WIDTH: 21 CM.

DEPTH: 22,5 CM.

PR O V EN AN C E: FORM ER EUROPEAN PRIVATE C O LLEC TIO N IN T H E LA T E 1 8 T H C E N T U R Y BASED ON T H E RES TO RATIO N T EC H N IQ U E. F ORM ER COLLECTION OF CAPT AIN EDWAR D G . S PEN C ER - C H U RC H IL L ( 1 8 7 6 – 1 9 6 4) , AT HIS NORTHWIC K PA RK PR O PER T Y, EN G LA N D. SOL D AT C HRISTIE’S LOND ON , NORTHWICK PARK COLLECTION: ANTIQUITIES , 2 1 JU N E 1 9 6 5 , LO T 3 72 .

This head of a young man represents the

of locks that are in rows and slightly wavy.

god Hermes. His facial features have

This sculpture is a perfect illustration of

been idealised on a perfect oval, the

ancient classicism and shows the talent

flesh

of the sculptor through the ideal balance

sculpted

with

great

skill,

to

such an extent that one can feel the bone

of

anatomical

structure of the face touching underneath

idealisation.

realism

and

the skin. The almond-shaped eyes are looking into the distance, underlined by the rounded nature of the eyelids. The long, fine nose is almost entirely preserved, which is sufficiently rare among archaeological sculptures to be worthy of note. The lips are full and fleshy and slightly apart. He has short hair made up

Northwick Park property, England.

timeless


The suppleness in the representation of the flesh and the juvenile aspect of the god links it to the work of Praxiteles, an Athenian sculptor in the mid-4th century BC, or that of his entourage. Our head is similar to the Andros-Farnese type, an example of which is on display in the museum on Andros (ill. 1), a Greek island in the Cyclades. Hermes, in heroic nudity, bears his travelling

Ill. 1. Andros-Farnese Hermes, marble, circa 10 AD.

mantle on his left shoulder. A serpent

Discovered at Paleopolis on the island of Andros.

climbs up the tree trunk that his feet are

Archaeological Museum, Andros, inv. No.245.

on, indicating that he is there in his role as a guider of souls. There are various copies in

Ill. 2. Statue of Hermes known as the «Belvedere Antinous».

Engraved

by

C.

Randon,

1704.

Pio-Clementino Museum, Vatican, inv. No. 907.

marble from the Roman era of this type of statue and our head may well be one of them (ill. 2 and 3). This type is thought to be a variation based on the Hermes carrying the infant Dionysus discovered in Olympia in 1877 (ill. 4), and attributed to Praxiteles according to a text by Pausanias who cites it in his description of the sanctuary.

Ill. 3. Hermes Farnese, 1st century AD, marble, H.: 2m. British Museum, London, inv. N°1864,1021.1.

Ill. 4. Hermes carrying the infant Dionysus, Greek original or Roman copy based on a lost original, marble. Olympia Archaeological Museum.


This head belonged to the prestigious

Publication:

collection of Captain Edward G. SpencerChurchill (1876 – 1964). In 1912, this cousin

- Christie’s London, Northwick Park

of Sir Winston Churchill inherited from

Collection: Antiquities, 21 June 1965, lot 372.

his maternal grandmother the estate of Northwick Park, as well as the collection of prints and drawings formed by the previous barons of Northwick during the 19th

century.

Spencer-Churchill

also

formed collections himself, mostly of Oriental ceramics and Persian art but also of Classical antiquities. He sold a large number of artworks to the British Museum during his lifetime. His collection was sold by Christie’s in 19 65. Our head was lot 372 of the Antiquities sale, on Monday June 21st .

Captain Edward G. Spencer-Churchill (1876 – 1964).


HEAD OF SEKHMET E GYP T IAN, NEW KINGDOM, 1 8 T H D YN AS T Y, CIRCA 1 550 – 1 2 92 BC G RAN O DIO RITE

NO S E RES T O RED.

HEIGHT: 19 CM.

WIDTH: 17 CM.

DEPTH: 14 CM.

PRO V EN AN C E: FORMER SWIS S PRIV A T E C O LLEC T IO N , ZU RIC H , PURCHASED FROM P. ZER V U DA C H I G ALLERY IN V EV EY, S WITZE R L A N D IN T H E EA RLY 1 9 8 0 S . THEN BE LG IA N PRIV A T E C O LLEC T IO N

black

sculpture displays the skill of the Egyptian

graniodorite with hints of brown, shows us

artisan sculptors of the 18th dynasty, which

the face of the Egyptian goddess Sekhmet,

is seen as the golden age of Ancient Egypt.

depicted as a woman with the head of a

Sekhmet is the daughter and also the eye of

lioness. The stone is very dense and was

the sun god Ra, whom he sent out to fight his

sculpted and polished to form the animal’s

enemies. She was a warrior goddess whose

face, then chiselled to give the details of the

name meant «the powerful one». She is also

eyes, the grooves to define the volume of

known as the «wrath of Ra», personifying

the cheeks, the nose and the long whiskers.

the destructive power of the sun. She is

The overall result is very sculptural and

represented with the face of a lioness,

balanced, with great strength and precision

the Egyptians having no doubt realised

in its craftsmanship. This fragment of the

that it was the female lions who hunted.

This

fragment,

sculpted

in


She was a wild, fearsome goddess but one who had another side to her character: in her calmer form, she was also the protector of Egypt and of the Pharaoh, whom she guided and advised in matters of combat. Sovereigns

therefore

created

multiple

representations of Sekhmet, bringing them many offerings to ensure the support of this fiery-tempered goddess and to appease her by means of rituals. Sekhmet could be depicted standing or seated (ill. 1 and 2). The majority of sculptures of this goddess were attributable to Pharaoh Amenhotep III (1390 – 1352), who had a particular reverence for her. Many representations of her were found in his mortuary temple or «House

Ill. 1. Statue of Sekhmet, Egyptian, 18th dynasty, reign of Amenhotep III, granodiorite, H.: 191 cm. British Museum, London, inv. No. EA84. Ill. 2. Statue of Sekhmet, Egyptian, 18th dynasty, reign of Amenhotep III, granodiorite, H.: 165 cm. British Museum, London, inv. No. EA60. Ill. 3. Statue of Sekhmet, Egyptian, 18th dynasty, reign of Amenhotep III, diorite, H.: 229 cm. Louvre Museum, Paris, inv. No. A2.

of Millions of Years», on the west bank of Thebes. It is estimated that it was originally home to 730 statues of Sekhmet – one seated and one standing for each day of the year. The daily rites practised before these statues accompanied the movement of the stars and the course of the sun. The statues were immense in size, as shown by the one on display in the Louvre Museum in Paris (ill. 3). Their style is very similar to that of our head, which may well be part of the same group (ill. 4). Around a hundred years after the death of Amenhotep III, his temple was left to decay and the sculptures of Sekhmet were then housed in various other sanctuaries and used by other Pharaohs.

Ill. 4. Fragment of a statue of Sekhmet, Egyptian, 18th dynasty, reign of Amenhotep III, granodiorite, H.: 79 cm. British Museum, London, inv. No. EA79.


DIANA VENATRIX R OM A N, CIRCA 2 ND C ENT U RY AD MAR B LE MIN O R R E S TO RAT IO NS T O T HE NO S E AND T HE C HIN.

HEIGHT: 103 CM.

WIDTH: 45 CM.

DEPTH: 26 CM.

PR O V EN AN C E: FORMER COLL EC TIO N O F A N A RT DEALER , U S A . SOLD BY SOTHEBY’S NEW YO RK, ANTIQUITIES AND ISLAMIC ART , 1 – 2 MAR C H 1 9 8 4 , LO T 73 . THEN FORMER COLLEC TIO N O F TH E EXPLO RER A N D A DV EN T U R E R J . STEPHEN FOSSETT (1944 – 2 0 0 7) A C Q U IR ED IN LO N DO N , 2 1 O C T OBE R 1 9 8 6 .

This magnificent sculpture is Diana,

with the right. She has a low bun in her

Roman goddess of hunting and twin sister

hair with locks forming a knot atop her

of Apollo.

head – a characteristic hairstyle in Roman

It shows her upright in a walking

sculpture of the 2nd century AD.

motion,

her

The energy of the sculpture resides in the

hunting dog at her side. She is wearing a

fluidity of the mantle, with the himation

short chiton robe to make her movement

giving the impression of being lifted by

easier, with a himation mantle around

the wind. The folds are delicately sculpted,

her left shoulder and tied at the waist,

giving glimpses of the curves of the

as well as laced sandals. The goddess

goddess’ body. The face shows a great

was likely holding a bow in her left hand

deal of finesse and is turned to the left,

and pulling an arrow from her quiver

with a faraway look in Diana’s eyes.

left

leg

leading,

with


She is represented here in majesty, as a

This type of representation of Diana

symbol of the beauty of nature and the

Venatrix (the huntress) is taken from a

goddess of hunting, whose arrows were

Greek original which no longer exists but

capable of punishing the offences of man.

is known via ancient writings and Roman

Our sculpture is similar to a Diana Venatrix

copies. The iconography is known as

that can be found in the Archaeological

«Rospigliosi», named after the Palazzo

Museum of Minturno, Italy (ill. 1).

Rospigliosi in Rome where a fine example of this type of sculpture can be found. One of the best known copies is housed in the Louvre Museum in Paris (ill. 2). A variation on this type shows the goddess accompanied by a stag (another animal generally associated with her) and a further example of this Diana the huntress can be seen in the Louvre Museum in Paris (ill. 3).

Ill. 1. Diana Venatrix, Roman, 1st – 2nd century AD, marble, H.: 95 cm. Archaeological Museum, Minturno.

Ill. 2. Artemis of the Rospigliosi type, Roman, 2nd century AD, marble, H.: 163 cm. Louvre Museum, Paris, inv. No. Ma 559. Ill. 3. «Diana of Versailles», Roman, 2nd century AD, marble, H.: 200 cm. Louvre Museum, Paris, inv. No. Ma 589.


Our sculpture was part of the collection of former commodities trader and explorer J. Stephen ÂŤSteveÂť Fossett. A man of means, Fossett is primarily known for his sporting exploits and is the holder of several records, making him one of the greatest adventurers of his time. He and his wife Peggy Fossett acquired a significant collection over a number of years, featuring works of art, archaeological items, paintings and more. The collection was displayed in their three residences, in California, Illinois and Colorado.

J. Stephen Fossett and Peggy Fossett.


STRIGILATED VASE R OM A N, L AT E 1 ST C ENT U RY AD MA RB LE RES T O RAT IO NS .

HEIGHT: 35 CM.

WIDTH: 52 CM.

DEPTH: 45 CM.

PRO V EN AN C E: EUROPEAN PRIV ATE CO LLEC T IO N IN 1 8 T H

– 1 9T H C EN T U RY

BASED ON

RES TO RATIO N T EC H N IQ U E. FORMER FRENCH PR IV A T E C O LLEC T IO N , S O U T H O F FR ANC E , IN THE SAME FAMILY S IN C E TH E 1 9 6 0 S .

This elegant, crystalline white marble

It appeared on urns and sarcophagi but

vase has a body decorated with strigils, or

also on vases that were purely decorative,

winding S-shaped lines. It sits on a small

as is the case with our piece. While

circular base and culminates in a large

most vases were generally more elongated

top that is also circular, whose edges may

and smaller, ours is different thanks to

originally have held a small lid. The handles

its slightly flattened body and large

are also decorated with strigils, giving the

size – a testimony to the skill of the sculptor.

piece a very distinctive overall impression of movement. This particular type of vase is inspired by the bronze vessels that were

de rigueur during the Roman period (ill. 1). The extended S-shaped motif was inspired by iron scrapers used by Roman athletes to wipe the sweat from their bodies after performing and thus became very popular.

Ill. 1. Crater of Mithridates V Eupator, Roman, 120 – 63 BC, bronze, H.: 70 cm. Capitoline Museum, Rome, inv. No. MC1068.


Our vase is beautifully produced and is a magnificent example of the exquisite skill of the sculptors at that time. A similar and equally impressive piece can be found in the Santa Barbara Museum of Art (ill. 2). A second vase, also with a flattened body and decorated with strigils, is housed in the Museo Archeologico Nazionale in Venice (ill. 3).

Ill. 2. Strigilated vase, Roman, 1st – 2nd century AD, marble. Santa Barbara Museum of Art, California.

Ill. 3. Strigilated vase, Roman, 1st - 2nd century AD, marble, H.: 37 cm. Museo Archeologico Nazionale, Venice, inv. No. 191.


TORSO OF HERCULES R OM A N, 1 ST – 2 ND C ENT U RY AD

MAR B LE

HEIGHT: 80 CM.

DEPTH: 33 CM.

WIDTH: 70 CM.

PRO V EN AN C E: FORMER COLLECTIO N O F WR IG H T S . LU DIN G TO N ( 1 9 0 0

1 9 9 2) ,

MONTECITO, CA LIFO R N IA , A C Q U IR ED O N 3 JU N E 1 9 6 5 FROM THE FALLA N I G A LLER Y IN RO ME, IT ALY. SANTA BARBARA MUSEUM O F AR T , DO N ATED B Y T H E AB O V E- MEN T I ON E D OWNER IN 1 9 9 3 ( IN V . N O . 1 9 9 3 . 1 . 8 7) . S OL D AT SO THEBY’S NEW YORK, ANTIQUITIES: SANTA BARBARA MUSEUM OF ART, 1 4 JU N E 2 0 0 0 , LO T 6 3 .

This male torso displays Hercules in heroic

modelling of the flesh. The artist has

nudity, his shoulders covered with the

succeeded

skin of the Nemean Lion. The warrior

strength and vitality of the famous

is shown here in a slight contrapposto,

Greek hero into the stone, making

with his trunk at an angle, introducing

this one of the finest representations

movement and energy into the sculpture

of Hercules. The hero is seen carrying

whilst

the skin of the Nemean Lion as a trophy

underlining

the

developed

in

transmitting

all

the

to demonstrate that he has completed

musculature.

the first of his Twelve Labours. He was the

likely carrying his club on his left arm,

sculptor can be felt in the natural

as was the case in similar models (ill. 1 to 3).

The

skill

and

precision

of


This sculpture was part of the collection of Wright S. Ludington (1900 – 1991) (ill.

4),

an

eminent

collector

and

philanthropist based in Santa Barbara, California. Ludington was an eclectic collector, and he decorated three successive properties (Val Verde up until 1957, then Hesperides until 1973 and finally October Hill) with Oriental, Greek and Roman Ill. 1. Hercules and Cerberus, Roman Empire, marble.

works which were housed alongside the

Pio-Clementino Museum, Vatican, inv. No. 488.

modern masters such as Degas, Picasso, Matisse and Dali.

Ill. 2. Hercules, Roman Empire, marble. Ny Carlsberg Glyptotek, Copenhagen, inv. No. 0504.

Ill. 3. Hercules, Roman, circa 140 – 170 AD, marble, H.: 76 cm. Skulpturensammlung, Dresden.

Ill. 4. Wright S. Ludington (1900 – 1991).


Our torso was purchased by Ludington on

Ludington was one of the founders of the

3 June 1965 from Fallani in Rome, according

Santa Barbara Museum of Art, of which

to an inventory of his acquisitions dating

he became vice-president in 1940 and then

from 1966 and preserved in the Ludington

president in 1951. He devoted the central

archives in the Santa Barbara Museum of Arts

atrium of the museum to donations from

(ill. 5). It was housed in Villa Hesperides

his own collection of classical sculptures,

(ill. 6 and 7) until Ludington moved

with over 300 works which he gave to the

to October Hill, when it was given

institution over the course of the years. Our

pride

torso of Hercules joined the collection after

of

place

in

the

gardens,

overlooking the surrounding Californian

his death in 1993.

hills (ill. 8).

Ill.

6.

«The

Collectors:

Wright

Ludington»,

Architectural Digest, January – February 1973, p. 84.

Ill. 5. Ludington Archive at the Santa Barbara Museum of Arts.

Ill. from

7.

In

1973

Ludington’s

Museum of Arts.

in

Villa

Hesperides.

archives,

Santa

Picture Barbara


Publications: - «The Collectors: Wright Ludington», Architectural Digest, January – February 1973, p. 83. - This work is referenced in the Arachne database

under

catalogue

number

D-DAI-ROM-0123_C05 (dating from 1963).

Ill. 8. Our torso in the October Hill Villa gardens, Montecito, after 1973.


SENBEF E GYPT IAN, L AT E PERIOD, BE GIN N IN G OF THE 2 6 TH DYNAS T Y, CIRCA 664 – 66 0 B C LIMES TO N E

HEIGHT: 38 CM.

DEPTH: 22 CM.

WIDTH: 27 CM.

PR O V EN AN C E: W I TH THE D EALER MAG UID SA MEDA ( 5 5 IB R AH IM PAS H A ) IN C AIRO I N T H E 1 9 5 0 S , DESCRIB ED B Y T H E EG YPT O LO G IS T J EAN YOYOTTE IN 1957 ( PER B O TH MER’S A RC H IV ES , N O . B V B 9 1 4) . IN THE COLLEC T IO N O F REN É WIT H O FS ( 1 9 1 9 – 1 9 9 7) , BRUSS ELS , FR O M 1 9 74 O R B EFO R E. SOL D BY SOTHEBY’S NEW YO R K, ANTIQUITIES , 1 0 DEC EMB ER 1 9 9 9 , L OT 229 . THEN IN A PRI V ATE C O LLEC TIO N IN N EW YO RK.

This magnificent block statue depicts a high-ranking official called Senbef, squatting with his knees around his chest and his arms laid flat. Delicately-engraved hieroglyphs can be made out on the front of his tunic and on the back rest pillar. The inscription was not quite completed since the lines of separation between the columns of hieroglyphs are only traced at the beginning of the text. Description of our sculpture by Jean Yoyotte.


The front features a call to passers-by:

benefit from their protection in the afterlife.

«Oh prophets and pure priests who have

Senbef calls the priests into the temple and

access to the temple of Osiris, Lord of

encourages them to pronounce his name to

Ro-setaou, you will be guests in this

benefit from his protection.

temple if you commemorate my name every day: Senbef, son of the divine father, priest imy-âh and prophet of Osiris, Lord of Ro-setaou, Di-Ptah-iaou, conceived by Seneb-Hor-ites, daughter of the governor of Khem Pef-tjau-[...]» The following is inscribed on the back rest:

«[The local god] of Senbef, son of the divine father, the priest imy-âh and responsible

Ill.

1.

Block

statue

of

Hr,

Late

Period,

25th – 26th dynasties, limestone, H.: 28.2 cm. Egyptian Museum, Cairo, inv. No. 37344.

for the confidential affairs of Ro-setaou, Di-Ptah-iaou, conceived by the daughter of the governor of Khem, Sene[b-Hor-ites].»

This is followed by a traditional version of the end of the Saite formula. This tells us, therefore, that this statue was placed in the temple of Osiris, Lord of Ro-stau, in the region of Giza. Block

Ill. 2. Block statue of Ankhwennefer, Late Period, 25th – 26th dynasties, limestone, H.: 46 cm. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, inv. No. 1993.161.

statues appeared at the beginning of the 12th dynasty during the Middle Kingdom

The raw material used – a very compact

and continued through the New Kingdom

form of limestone – was characteristic of

into the Late Period. It was the preferred

sculptures of the early 26th dynasty. The

way of depicting characters who were

attention given to the details of the body of

neither royal nor divine, in temples or tombs.

Senbef by the sculptor confirms this dating.

In temples, as was the case with Senbef, it

The body is covered in a combination

enabled the person offering the sculpture to

of a tunic and a very tight corset,

take part in the worship of the deity and to

which highlights the shape of the back,


the arms and the legs, in opposition to the

works of art, most notably primitive art,

traditional highly geometric aspect of

before being purchased at auction by a

the block statue. The tunic descends to a

private collector based in New York.

level which leaves the feet visible. The arms on the top of the statue – which would traditionally be flat – are different from one other and separated by an indent that has been carved. The realism of the artist goes as far as the nails on the hands, and the detail of the sculpture, which enhances the shape of the body, enables us to date our sculpture exactly to the reign of Psammetichus I (664 – 610 BC).

Ill. 3. Block statue of Djedbastetiufankh, Late Period, 25th – 26th dynasties, limestone, H.: 26.1 cm. Cleveland Museum of Art, inv. No. 1914.661.

Our sculpture was probably discovered in the Coptic cemetery of Nazlet el-Batran located south of the City of Giza (based on notes made by Bothmer, No. 914). According to French Egyptologist Jean

Jean Yoyotte (1927 – 2009).

Photographies of our sculpture, Bothmer archives, No. BVB 914.

Publications: - M. Lehner and Z. Hawass, Giza and

the Pyramids: The Definitive History, Chicago, 2017, p. 495.

Yoyotte, it appeared on the ancient art

- C. M. Zivie-Coche, Giza au premier

market in 1956. It then became part of the

millénaire, autour du temple d’Isis, dame

collection of René Withofs, a Brussels

des pyramides, Museum of Fine Arts,

gallery owner who acquired a number of

Boston, 1991, pp. 215-216.


HEAD OF VENUS R OMAN, 2 ND C ENT U RY AD MAR B LE

HEIGHT: 24 CM.

WIDTH: 15 CM.

DEPTH: 20 CM.

PR O V EN AN C E: FORMER BELG IA N PRIV A T E C O LLEC T IO N O F ANNE AND BAUD OUIN D E G RU N N E ( 1 9 1 7 – 2 0 1 1 ) S IN C E T H E EA RL Y 1 9 6 0 S , BY TRADITION, ACQ U IR ED IN T H E PA RIS IAN AR T MA RKET .

This head shows a beautiful idealised

and cascading onto the nape of the neck.

feminine face, topped with a complex head

The hair links our sculpture with the

of hair which makes it possible to identify it

Capitoline Venus, based on a Greek original

as Venus, the goddess of beauty and love.

by Praxiteles (ill. 1), and the Crouching

The smooth flesh of her face conveys the

Venus, the Greek original of which is

calm and the grandeur of the goddess. Her

attributed to the sculptor Doidalses and

small yet full lips and finely-edged eyes

inspired by Pliny the Elder (ill. 2). In these

stand out from the skin that is smooth

two types of statues, the goddess Venus is

and full of volume. In contrast, the hair is

entirely naked, bathing and either standing

sculpted in relief, with locks deeply scored

or seated. Interrupted during her ablutions,

by a drill, creating a juxtaposition of light

she turns towards the intruder and hides

and shade. The hair features a headband

her nudity with her arms. These sculptures

holding wavy locks that fall down onto the

show the goddess in movement and this is

forehead. A knot is tied on the top and the

recalled here with the angle of the neck,

rest of the hair is held in a bun around the

showing that Venus is turning around.

back of the head, with a few locks escaping


The treatment of her hair in very accented relief as well as her facial features enable us to date the head as being from the 2nd century AD. In terms of style, it can be compared with the head of the Lely Venus on display at the British Museum in London (ill. 2) or the head at the Toledo Museum of Art (ill. 3).

Ill. 3. Head of Venus, Asia Minor, circa 161 – 169 AD, marble, H.: 18 cm. Toledo Museum of Art, Ohio, inv. No. 1976.21.

This beautiful head was part of the prestigious Belgian collection of Count Baudouin de Grunne (1917 – 2011), one of the greatest collectors of African art of the 20th century, and his wife Anne de Grunne (ill. 4). It was acquired at the beginning of the 1960s and displayed in their apartment Ill. 1. Capitoline Venus, Antonine era based on a

on the Belgian coast.

Greek Hellenistic original, marble, H.: 193 cm. Capitoline Museums, Rome, inv. No. MC0409.

Ill. 2. Venus known as Lely, Antonine era based on a Greek Hellenistic original, marble, H.: 112 cm.

Ill. 4. The lounge in the apartment of Anne and

British Museum, London, inv. No. 1963.10 - 29.1.

Baudouin de Grunne, where our head was displayed.


HARPOCRATES EGYP T, R OM AN ERA, CIRCA 1 ST C ENT U RY AD MA RB LE

HEIGHT: 43 CM.

WIDTH: 13 CM.

DEPTH: 12,5 CM.

PR O V EN AN C E: FORM ER COLLECTION OF C H AR LES K. S U R S O C K, C A IR O , PR IO R T O 1 9 3 1 . SOLD BY SOTHEB Y’S LO N DO N , 4 – 5 MA Y 1 9 3 1 , LO T 8 1 . FORMER COLLECTION O F R O G ER PEYREFITTE ( 1 9 0 7 – 2 0 0 0 ) , P A R I S . SOLD BY ADER – PIC AR D – TA JA N , PAR IS , 2 6 MA Y 1 9 77, LO T 5B. FORMER FRENCH PRIV A T E C O LLEC T IO N , N IC E, S IN C E TH E N .

This delicate sculpture represents a child

meaning «the child»). Horus is the son of

standing upright, entirely naked, with its

the goddess Isis and the god Osiris.

right leg stretching forward in a walking motion. His head is shaven but there is

Representations of this deity with the

a long lock of child’s hair that falls down

traits of the child Harpocrates began in

the right side of the head, as well as the

Alexandria during the Hellenistic period,

Pschent, the double crown of Egypt

with worship soon spreading throughout

worn by the Pharaohs. He is holding his

the Greco-Roman world. During the

right index finger to his mouth in a

Roman period, this god was associated

childlike gesture. All of these symbols

with the worship of mystery due to the

allow us to identify him as Harpocrates, the

finger held to his lips, as if he was telling his

representation of the god Horus as a child

followers to hold their peace regarding the

(from Har- meaning «Horus» and -pokhrat

mysteries that had been revealed to them.


This

sculpture

the

interesting one and a rare example of

iconographical Egyptian tradition which

its kind. Representations of the child

can be seen in its hieratic posture, its hair

Harpocrates usually tend towards either

and its crown. Nevertheless, the supple form

the Egyptian tradition of representation

of the body revealing the chubby features

(ill. 1 and 2) or a Greco-Roman style (ill. 3

of a child with full cheeks and a small

and 4). A small bronze sculpture housed

mouth

more

in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in

Greco-Roman tradition of realism in the

New York (ill. 5) is similar to ours, but is

treatment of the body.

not of the same size, quality of sculpture or

are

conforms

reminiscent

of

to

a

condition.

Ill. 3. Harpocrates, Roman, marble, H.: 158 cm. Ill. 1. Harpocrates wearing a double crown, Egypt,

Capitol Museum, Rome, inv. No. 646. Ill. 4. Statuette of Harpocrates, Roman, marble,

late period or Ptolemaic era, circa 664 – 30 BC,

Archaeological Museum of Thessalonica, Greece,

cupreous metal, H.: 11.9 cm. Metropolitan Museum

inv. No. 844.

of Art, New York, inv. No. 10.130.1317. Ill. 2. Statuette of Harpocrates seated, Egypt, late period, 760 – 332 BC, bronze, H.: 12 cm. Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, inv. No. 02.516.

The

sculpture

perfect

meeting

therefore of

provides

Egyptian

a and

Greek artistic traditions which began to blend from the Ptolemaic period and gave rise to a new form of original art. As such, our sculpture of Harpocrates is an

Ill. 5. Harpocrates wearing an Egyptian crown and carrying the club of Hercules, Egypt, 1st century AD bronze, H.: 18.5 cm. Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, inv. No. 46.2.1.


It belonged to the Charles K. Sursock collection in Cairo which was sold in 1931 at Sotheby’s in London (ill. 6). It then became part of the private collection of Roger Peyrefitte (1907 – 2000), a famous French author of the 20th century. He was also a lover of ancient art, whose collection was renowned for its great quality (ill. 7 and 8). He published the works he owned in a 1972 book entitled Un Musée de l’A mour («A

Museum of Love», éditions Du Rocher), which featured our Harpocrates (ill. 9). Part of his collection was sold in 1977, including

Ill. 7. Roger Peyrefitte in his Parisian apartment, with his collection of antiques.

the Harpocrates which went on to feature in a private collection in Nice, where it was housed until today.

Ill. 8. Harpocrates standing on the desk.

Ill. 6. Sotheby’s London, The Collection of Egyptian,

Greek, Roman, Mediæval, & Modern Works of Art, Property of Madame M. Charles K. Sursock,

Ill. 9. Roger Peyrefitte, Un Musée de l’Amour

4 – 5 May 1931, lot 81.

(«A Museum of Love»), éd. du Rocher, 1972, p. 54-55.


Publications: - Sotheby’s London, The Collection of

Egyptian, Greek, Roman, Mediæval, & Modern Works of Art, Property of Madame M. Charles K. Sursock, 4 – 5 May, 1931. - Roger Peyrefitte, Un Musée de l’A mour

(«A Museum of Love»), éditions Du Rocher, 1972, p. 54-55. - Ader – Picard – Tajan, Roger Peyrefitte :

Sculptures en marbre antiques et d’après l’antique [...] («Roger Peyrefitte: Sculptures in ancient and ancient-style marble [...]»), Hôtel Georges V, Paris, 26 May 1977. - Connaissance Des Arts - La Valeur Des

Objets - Numéro Spécial Consacré Aux Ventes Publiques Parisiennes D’octobre 1976 à Juillet 1977 («The Value of Objects – Special Edition on Public Sales in Paris from October 1976 – July 1977»).


APHRODITE R OM AN, 4 TH C ENT U RY AD

MAR B LE M INO R RES T O RAT IO NS .

HEIGHT: 90 CM.

DEPTH: 32 CM.

WIDTH: 32 CM.

PR O V EN AN C E: F ORM ER AMERICAN PRIV ATE C O LLEC TIO N O F TH E EXPLO RER A N D A D V E N T U R E R J . STEPHEN FOSSETT (1944

This

sensual

marble

figure

– 2 0 0 7) ,

depicts

C H IC A G O , A C Q U IR ED PR IO R T O 1 9 8 7 .

with suppleness, and her complexion is

Aphrodite, goddess of beauty and love.

emphasised

She is fully naked, standing on her right

intensity of the polished marble. This

leg and leaning her left arm on the trunk

sculpture of Aphrodite is part of a highly

of a tree to remove or put on a sandal

classical heritage. As far back as the

which has since disappeared. Her outline,

4th century BC, the Greeks first dared to

balanced between the angle of her hips

undress the goddess. Indeed, Praxiteles’

and that of her shoulders, is characteristic

famous Aphrodite of Knidos

of the iconography which strives to

became known via Roman copies such

highlight the voluptuous curves of the deity.

as the one in the Palazzo Altemps in Rome

The great care given to the representation

(ill. 1) – shows the goddess in a composition

of the flesh demonstrates the desire to

similar to ours but with a little more

represent Aphrodite in her role as the

discretion.

goddess of desire. She has been modelled

by

the

softness

and

which


treatment of the nude and her expression are all elements which can be found in the classical Greek tradition.

This iconographical theme became very popular during the Hellenistic period and enjoyed great success during the Roman era, most notably in Phoenicia, the region from which our sculpture comes. It is thought to have been made for a luxurious Ill. 1. Aphrodite of Knidos, Roman copy based on

private villa in the major Phoenician city of

Praxiteles. Palazzo Altemps, Rome, inv. No. 8619.

Tyre and thus hails from an area that was

Ill. 2. Statuette of a goddess standing naked, no doubt depicting the great Babylonian goddess,

known for its worship of Aphrodite and

3rd century BC – 3rd century AD, Babylon, alabaster,

which, combined with that of the oriental

gold and ruby, H.: 24.80 cm. Louvre Musuem, Paris,

goddess Ishtar-Astarte, contributed to

inv. No. AO 20127.

the popularity of this type of production during the Roman era. The alabaster

The deity is fully naked but places her

statuette of a goddess standing naked in the

hands in such a way as to preserve

Louvre Museum in Paris (ill. 2) highlights

her intimacy in a gesture of surprise

the close ties between the two deities

accentuated by the movement of the head.

who were part of a genuine syncretism,

The theme of ablutions, underlined by

both religious and stylistic, since it depicts

the motif of the basin and the drapery

the goddess Ishtar of Babylon with the

which the goddess is leaning on, recalls

graceful forms of Aphrodite. The alabaster

her origins. The poet Hesiod, in the

statuette in the British Museum from

8th century BC, described her as being born

Byblos (ill. 3) is excellent proof of the

of the foam of the sea. This iconographical

existence of this iconography in Phoenicia

theme of Aphrodite going about her

as early as the Hellenistic period. The

ablutions, introduced by Praxiteles, was

bronze in the Louvre Museum, dated

the object of a number of variations, and our

from the Roman Empire and presumed to

statue features among these. The theme

be from Syria (ill. 4), demonstrates the same

of bathing, the hair tied back, the general

iconography of Aphrodite with a sandal.


the indented pupils and the eyelids curving all around the eye, are characteristic of this output. Our figure has all of these features and is uncannily reminiscent of the sculptures from the Mithraeum at Sidon on display at the Louvre Museum (ill. 5).

Ill.

3.

Aphrodite

removing

her

sandal,

This enchanting Aphrodite was part of

150 – 50 BC, Byblos, alabaster, H.: 35.5 cm.

the collection of the trader, adventurer and

British Museum, London, inv. No. 1914,1020.1.

explorer J. Stephen «Steve» Fossett (ill. 6),

Ill. 4. Aphrodite untying her sandal, early Roman Empire, probably Syria, bronze, H.: 22.20 cm. Louvre Museum, Paris, inv. No. Br4417.

who acquired it in London on 8 June 1987. Famous for his five circumnavigations of the globe (by boat, hot air balloon and aeroplane), he was a man of means who, as well as having a taste for adventure, was drawn to the arts. He and his wife Peggy Fossett acquired a significant collection featuring works of different origins, including paintings, sculptures, archaeological items and Asian art. The various works were divided between their

Ill. 5. Genii of the Mithraeum at Sidon, 389 AD,

residences in Carmel (California), Beaver

marble. Louvre Museum, Paris, inv. No. AO 22259

Creek (Colorado) and Chicago (Illinois).

Our sculpture illustrates the persistence of this theme over time up until the later Roman Empire. The extreme polishing of the marble, accompanied by the deeply carved hair, is characteristic of work of the 4th century AD. Furthermore, the very intense, graphic treatment of the eyes, with

Ill. 6. J. Stephen Fossett in aviator gear with his wife Peggy.


HEAD OF SILENUS R OM A N, 1 ST – 2 ND C ENT U RY AD MA RB LE

HEIGHT: 35 CM.

WIDTH: 15 CM.

DEPTH: 16 CM.

PRO V EN AN C E: FORMERLY IN THE COLLEC T IO N O F MAR C DO LG O V O - S AB O U R OF F , VI L L A RAY BAUD , ROUTE DE SER RES , S AIN T - PAU L- DE- V EN C E, FRAN C E , S I N C E 1 9 7 7 . THEN IN THE FRENCH PR IV A T E C O LLEC T IO N O F R. G IN A C , N I C E .

In mythology, Silenus belongs to the

depicted as an aged man with marked facial

family

personifies

features, a characteristic beard and pointed

drunkenness. He is also the adoptive father

ears. His main attribute is a crown of vine

and tutor of Dionysus – the god of wine –

leaves. Our sculpture shows him with a

who was the result of an illegitimate tryst

melancholy expression. His face is leaning

between Zeus and a mortal by the name of

forward, looking downwards and his

Semele, and was thus pursued by the

features are particularly fine, with hollow-

jealous Hera. To help him escape,

sculpted cheeks and the look in his eyes is

Zeus gave Dionysus as a new-born

emphasised by the prominence of his eye

to the nymphs, under the supervision

sockets. His beard and hair have also been

of

childhood,

carved in detail, with the sculptor having

Silenus taught Dionysus how to plant

made sure to create each lock of hair in high

vines. Once the deity had reached

relief, creating a sensation of movement and

adulthood, Silenus became part of his

light. The same keen attention to detail can

entourage alongside other satyrs, as well

be seen in the clusters of grapes and vine

as maenads and nymphs. Silenus is always

leaves which decorate his hair.

of

Silenus.

satyrs

During

and

his


The fine realism of the sculpture sets it apart from many other representations of Silenus. The satyr was often depicted with a grotesque physique, with a flattened nose and thick lips (ill. 1 and 2). Our sculpture comes from a more naturalist tradition of representation of Silenus implemented by the sculptor Lysippos around 300 BC. This Greek original in bronze has since disappeared but we are aware of it via

Ill. 2. Silenus, 2nd century AD, found in Rome on the Via Flavia. Palazzo Massimo alle Terme, Rome.

various copies, including a famous one housed in the Louvre Museum in Paris (ill. 3). Silenus carries the infant Dionysus in his arms, looking down on him with compassion and paternal affection, with a smile crossing his lips. The slim, muscular aspect of the sculpture enables it to be attributed to Lysippos. Our sculpture

Ill. 3. Silenus carrying Dionysus as a child, 1st or 2nd century AD, based on a Greek original in

would therefore appear to be a copy from

bronze circa 300 BC, discovered in the Gardens of

the Roman era of this famous sculpture, thus

Sallust, Rome, marble, H.: 190 cm. Former Borghese

explaining the downwards look towards

collection. Louvre Museum, Paris, inv. No. MR 346.

the infant Dionysus. It also connects it with other similar examples which follow the same model (ill. 4 and 5).

Ill. 4. Bust of Silenus, Roman era based on a Greek original from the Hellenistic period, marble. Former Albani collection, Capitoline Museum, Rome. Ill. 5. Head of Silenus, 2nd century AD, marble, Ill. 1. Silenus, Roman Empire, marble. Pio-Clementino

H.: 45 cm. Antikensammlung der Staatlichen Museen

Museum, Vatican, inv. No. 323.

zu Berlin, inv. No. SK 279.


Another element of note in our Silenus is the particular cut of the bust, indicating that it was atop a hermaic pillar. These originally depicted the god Hermes and were used has milestones and to guide travellers at crossroads. They became more prevalent in Greece during the Classical period (5th – 4th century BC) and then throughout the Mediterranean. Other deities soon began to be depicted in this way, notably

Silenus,

whose

Dionysian

iconography was much sought after in ornaments for gardens and banqueting halls (ill. 6).

Ill. 6. Pair of hermaic pillars depicting Silenus, marble, H.: 72 and 72.5 cm. Vatican Museums, Galleria dei Candelabri, Vatican, inv. No. 2392.


CINERARY URN RELIEF R OM A N, 1 ST – 2 ND C ENT U RY AD

MA RB LE

HEIGHT: 28 CM.

WIDTH: 31 CM.

DEPTH: 13 CM.

PR O V EN AN C E: FORM ERLY IN THE COLLEC TIO N O F H EN RY DE MO N TH ERLA N T ( 18 9 5

1 9 7 2) ,

AC Q U IRED B EFO RE 1 9 5 0 .

This astonishing item is a fragment of

The dedication starts with an invocation

a circular cinerary urn sculpted with a

to the Manes, deities associated with the

rectangular inscription panel flanked by

souls of the dead. Next is the name of the

two figures of Eros.

deceased, and then that of the dedicator,

The panel is engraved with eight lines

in this case, the wife of the deceased.

in Latin: D(iis).M(anibus)

The whole text could be translated as:

CN LUCRETIO

“To the divine Manes, for Cnaeus

HERMADIONI

Lucretius Hermadionus,

LUCRETIA

Lucretia Januaria

IANUARIA

to her most deserving

CONIUGI BENE

husband”.

MERENTI FECIT


The panel is framed by two figures of Eros in relief. Both are standing as though dozing, with eyes closed and heads bent. They are leaning on a torch while the sheath for a volumen (rolled papyrus) rests at their feet. The detail visible in the feathers of the wings, the delicate curls of hair and the facial features as well as the excellent state of preservation of the inscription make

Ill. 2. Urn dedicated to T. Flavius Clodianus, Roman, Antonine era, marble, H.: 39.5 cm. Gregoriano Profano Museum, Vatican, inv. No. 5366.

this fragment an exceptional collection piece. It is a testament to funerary art in Roman times. The left part of the fragment indicates that the back of the urn had a strigilated pattern – in other words, it was decorated with wavy lines. This pattern was widely used to decorate vases, sarcophagi and urns in the time of the Romans. Compositions placing Eros in a funerary context can also be found on two

Ill. 3. Cinerary urn representing Eros and Psyche,

cinerary urns conserved at the Vatican (ill. 1

Roman, second half of the 2nd century AD, marble,

and 2) and another that is now the property of a private collector (ill. 3).

Ill. 1. Urn in the name of Sex. Flavius Secundus, Roman, 2nd century AD, marble, H.: 25 cm. Gregoriano Profano Museum, Vatican, inv. No. 10699.

H.: 18.5 cm. Private collection.


This fragment comes from the collection of

anquity

enthusiast

Henry

de

Montherlant (1895 – 1972), author and member of the Académie française – the pre-eminent council for matters relating to the French language and standards of literary taste – who surrounded himself with Greek, Roman and Egyptian artworks throughout his life.

Henry de Montherlant in his apartment.

Page from the notebook of Henry de Montherlant detailing some of his purchases.


CYLINDRICAL VASE E GYP TIA N , EARL Y DYNAS T IC PERIOD, 1 S T D Y NAS T Y, 2 965 – 2 8 1 5 BC A LA B A S T ER RES T O RAT IO NS .

HEIGHT: 32 CM.

DIAMETER: 15 CM.

PR O V EN AN C E: W I TH THE ART DEALER ELIE ALB ERT A B EMAYO R ( 1 8 8 3 – 1 9 4 1 ) , R U E K A M E L , IN FRONT O F S H EPH EA RD’S H O T EL, C AIRO . T HEREAFTER ACQUIRED BY MIN A MERRILL PRIN DLE ( 1 8 6 4 – 1 9 6 3 ) , DU L U T H , M I N N E SOTA AND PA S A DEN A , C ALIFO R N IA , 7 JU LY 1 9 2 2 . T H EN B Y DES C EN T .

This magnificent tubular vase is sculpted

throughout

in banded alabaster. It is cylindrical in

bowls and other containers as well as for

shape and culminates in a rounded lip

canopic jars for burials. To make this

and rib in slight relief below. The vase

elongated type of vase, the sculptor will

is elongated and has different shades of

first have chiselled a block of alabaster. The

yellow, brown and ochre in the veins that are

exterior would then have been delicately

characteristic of the material. Alabaster

polished with an abrasive such as sand or

is a stone that is primarily extracted

emery, while the interior would have been

from the eastern deserts, between Cairo

hollowed out using a sort of drill. Our vase

and Luxor. It was highly sought-after

is of exceptional quality, with the artisan

due

cleverly using the natural banding of the

to

its

translucent

quality

and

distinctive colour, and was widely used

the

centuries

for

plates,

stone to give it an incredible refinement.


Vases of this kind were used as containers

Our vase belonged to a merchant by the

for unguents or perfumes in residences, as

name of Elie Albert Abemayor, who was

well as in tombs, to provide the deceased

based in Cairo. It was then acquired

with the necessary comfort in the afterlife.

by Mina Merrill Prindle, wife of the industrialist William Martin Prindle. The Prindles were leading citizens of Duluth, Minnesota. In 1905, they built an imposing new house at 2211 Greysolon Road, taking up residence in 1906. It was decorated with various archaeological items, most notably vases and bowls in banded alabaster, predominantly acquired by Mina Prindle during a trip to Egypt in 1922.

Ill. 1. Cylindrical vase, Egyptian, 2nd millennium BC, alabaster. Louvre Museum, Paris, inv. No. SB 495.

Our vase in the residence of the Prindles, in 1924.

Ill. 2. Cylindrical vase, Egyptian, 1st dynasty, alabaster, H.: 24 cm. History of Art Museum, Vienna, inv. No. 6854. Ill. 3. Cylindrical vase, Egyptian, 1st – 2nd dynasty, alabaster, H.: 36 cm. MariÊmont Royal Museum, Belgium, inv. No. B. 118.

Sitting room in the residence with Egyptian pieces.


RELIEF FRAGMENT R OM A N , 2 ND – 3 RD C ENT U RY AD

MAR B LE

HEIGHT: 26 CM.

WIDTH: 25,5 CM.

DEPTH: 10 CM.

PR O V EN AN C E: POSSIBLY IN THE C O LLEC T IO N O F MAR Q U IS G IU S TIN IA N I , PALAZZ O G IU S TIN IA N I, RO ME, 1 7 T H C EN TU R Y. L IKEL Y THEREAFTER IN THE C O LLEC TIO N O F MA RQ U IS G IA MPIETR O C A M P A N A (1808 – 1880), VILLA C AMPAN A A L C ELIO , RO ME. COL L ECTION OF PROFESSO R A RT H U R LIN C O LN FRO TH IN G H A M (1 8 5 9 – 1 9 23 ) , PRI NCETON, NEW JERSEY ; S ALE O F H IS ES T ATE 2 9 – 3 0 O C T O B ER 1 9 24, L O T 7 6 . B OU GHT BY JOSEPH BRU MMER ( 1 8 8 3 – 1 9 4 7) , N EW YO RK, IN V . N O. 7 5 2/C . FRANKLIN G ALLERY, B EV ER LY H ILLS . CHARL TON HESTON (1923 – 2 0 0 8 ) C O LLEC T IO N , LO S AN G ELES , C A L I F O R N I A , ACQUIRED IN T H E LA T E 1 9 5 0 S O R EAR LY 1 9 6 0 S .

This small fragment is from the upper edge of the side of a sarcophagus. It is sculpted in relief and represents a tritone from the back. Tritones were creatures which were part of the entourage of marine deities, personifying the roaring of the sea. Here the tritone is playing the lyre with its left hand while turning its face away to the right.

Ill. 1.


On the other side, part of a drape swelled by the sea breeze remains visible, doubtless wrapped around a feminine deity that was part of this marine procession. The

only

known

example

of

a

sarcophagus carved with a marine theme representing a tritone playing the lyre looking behind him was to be found in the Palazzo Giustiniani in Rome in the 17th century (represented in the Galleria Giustiniana catalogue) (ill. 1). Our sculpture

Ill. 2. Joseph Brummer (1883 – 1947).

is almost certainly a surviving fragment from that sarcophagus. It was acquired by Joseph Brummer (ill. 2) during the Frothingham sale in New York in 1924, as shown in the inventory of the Brummer Gallery (ill. 3).

Ill. 1. Galleria Giustiniana, vol. 2, Rome, 1640, pl. 146 (overall and detailed view). Ill. 3. Inventory card from the Brummer Gallery for our fragment, with the caption «Bought at American

Art Galleries, Frothingham Sale, Oct. 29, 1924; with N 752/d (sold) comprised No.76 of the catalogue». The Brummer Gallery Records, object inventory card No.N752c, Cloisters Library and Archives, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.


Arthur L. Frothingham (1859 – 19 23) studied in Rome between 1868 and 1881, before going on to be professor of Semitic languages at Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore during the 1880s. An entry in the journal of the university in December 1884 indicated that he organised a temporary exhibition of his collection of antiquities at the university. Among the pieces on display were «some interesting fragments of marble,

purchased from the Campana collection»

Ill. 5. Historical photographs: a catalogue of three

(ill. 4).

thousand three hundred photographs of antiquities

It is probable that the majority of the

in Rome and Italy ... / prepared under the direction

fragments in the Frothingham collection,

of John Henry Parker. London, 1879. Sculpture,

which were sold off individually in 1924,

fragments of bas-reliefs built into the wall of the Villa Campana.

came from the Villa Campana, in Rome. They were acquired as a lot on the Roman art market shortly after the demolition of the building. Indeed, many of the fragments acquired by Brummer at the Frothingham sale can be seen in a photograph on the wall of the Villa Campana (ill. 5 and 6). We are quite certain that ours is of the same origin.

Ill. 6. Inventory card from the Brummer Gallery for a fragment visible in the top left-hand corner of the previous photograph, lot 80 in the Frothingham sale. Fragment now on display at the Nasher Museum of Art at Duke University, inv. DCC1969.9. The Brummer Gallery Records, object inventory Ill. 4. Johns Hopkins University Circulars, vol. IV,

card No. N752c, Cloisters Library and Archives,

n°35, Baltimore, December 1884, p. 27.

Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York.


The relief was later acquired by the Franklin Gallery in Beverly Hills, and then by the actor Charlton Heston (1923 – 2008) for his collection in Los Angeles in the late 1950s – early 1960s (ill. 7).

Ill. 7. Charlton Heston (1923 – 2008).


PORTRAIT OF A WOMAN R OM A N , L A TE 2 ND – EARL Y 3 RD C ENT U RY AD, S EV ER A N DYNAS T Y ERA, 1 93 – 2 3 5 AD

B RO N ZE

HEIGHT: 10 CM.

WIDTH: 12 CM.

DEPTH: 4 CM.

PRO V EN AN C E: FORMER COLLECT IO N O F G EN ERAL A MO U R EL ( 1 8 4 8 – 1 9 0 8 ) , CAPTAIN OF THE 15 T H ARMED C O RPS B A S ED IN MAR S EILLE, FR A N C E .

This elegant fragment of a bronze statue

way. The fragment is hollow and illustrates

shows the profile of a woman’s face from

the lost-wax casting technique for bronze

the left. The eye is delicately carved with

statues used by Greek sculptors and by the

a fine eyelid and the pupil is highlighted

Romans after them. This technique enables

by a discreet carved swirl. The eyebrow is

large hollow sculptures to be made, saving

finely drawn and also finished off by a series

on material and making them less heavy.

of incisions which emphasise the eye. The

During the creation process, a system of

nose is straight while the lips are a little

vents is installed to evacuate the wax which

fleshed out. Lastly, the hair is made up of

is replaced by molten bronze (ill. 1). After

delicate locks pulled back which hide the

the moulding, these vents are cut and filed

ear and which culminate most likely in a

down and the holes filled in by bronze

bun, itself held up by two braids which are

pellets – one of which has been lost from

still visible. A small kiss-curl around the ear

the cheek of our portrait.

rounds off the coiffure in the most charming


This fragment of a face is a beautiful and rare example of the Roman art of bronze portraits. It belonged to the descendants of General Amourel (1848 – 19 08), commander of the 15th Army Corps in Marseille (ill. 4). In 1881, he was notably involved in the conquest of Tunisia. In 1885 – 1886 he was part of the expeditionary corps in Tonkin, Vietnam, where he developed a taste for Asian arts which were later to make up the Ill. 1. The technique of lost-wax casting.

majority of his collection.

After the bronze moulding, the surface of our portrait was worked on when it was cold by means of incisions, to provide more detail and give more expression to the sculpture. The result can be seen in the fine incisions on the eyebrow, the iris and the pupil. The striation of the hair and the chiselling of the eyelids were also done when cold, and these details are very reminiscent of the marble portraits from the

Ill. 2. Bust of Julia Mamaea (180 – 235), circa 200 AD, marble. Capitoline Museums, Rome. Ill. 3. Bust of Elagabal (203 – 222), circa 220 AD, marble. Capitoline Museums, Rome.

Severan dynasty (193 – 235 AD). The same work around the eyes and eyebrows can be seen in the portrait of Julia Mamaea that is housed in the Capitoline Museums (ill. 2) and on that of Elagabal (ill. 3). However, the hair that is fixed and braided and the detail of the pupil are different from these imperial portraits. Our face was certainly sculpted in the provinces, in the eastern part of the Empire.

Ill. 4. General Amourel (1848 – 1908)


Violaine BarthĂŠlĂŠmy - Antoinette Schneider Gladys, Adrien & Ollivier Chenel Printed by Burlet Graphics With the participation of Vincent Martagex, Clotilde Pilon and Andrew Lilley (traduction).

No part of this publication may be transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic or mechanical, including photocopy, recording or any storage or retrieval system, without prior permission from the copyright holders and publishers.

Published in February 2019 In an edition of 1 000.


3 Quai Voltaire, 75007 Paris Tel. +33 1 42 97 44 09

www.galeriechenel.com / contact@galeriechenel.com


3 Quai Voltaire, 75007 Paris Tel. +33 1 42 97 44 09

www.galeriechenel.com / contact@galeriechenel.com

Profile for ArtSolution sprl

Galerie Chenel: Reflection  

Galerie Chenel: Reflection