ISBN: 978-2-87457-095-7
14,50 €


Portrait de femme au milieu d’un décor végétalisé. Essai d’interprétation du motif à partir de céramiques italiotes inédites

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by Louise WILLOCX, in Res Antiquae 14, 2017.

Among the Greek pottery collection of the L Museum in Louvain-la-Neuve, some vases’ main motif is a woman’s head in profile in the middle of a vegetal decoration. After having determined the origin, the dating and the workshop or the painter of most of these vases, we studied the meaning of the motif, which was very widespread during the ive century BC, especially in the apulian red-figured pottery. Originally, these heads were found as secondary ornament on the collars of craters. Quickly, they evolved to occupy a central position and compose the main decoration, even unique, on mass-produced small vases. The religious and sepulchral interpretation of these vases, very common in the funerary furniture, seems certain. Indeed, the discovery’s context, but also the presence of carved heads in funerary and chtonian contexts, the association of these isolated heads with funerary, mythological or domestic scenes linked to death and the proliferation of vegetal motifs around the heads are all arguments pointing in this direction. However, we should not forget the simply decorative function of this motif, which might have lost its original significance and depicted perhaps merely the women‘s dress.

Keywords: Greek pottery, Apulia, Campania, Iconography, Woman, Head, Vegetal Decoration