Saturday, October 30, 2010

Black figured ware

Between the 7th and the 5th century B.C. a new style of pottery arose in Greece, black figured ware. This is when the painting on the pottery begins to rise to a high level of representation. The red is the clay of the pottery itself. The black is applied and actually doesn't appear black until the vase is fired.

Most of this pottery was made in first Corinth and then Athens. The individual artist begin to work in readily identifiable styles. Some of their names are known but most are given a name based on a particularly well known example of their work.

Mythological scenes were especially popular. Many of the vases also depicted athletes. Some of them are erotic and would seem shocking if shown in a magazine or on television today, lots of phalluses and friendly maidens.

Major museum collections like the Met's are fascinating to see and have hundreds of vessels to appreciate. I hope the next time you are in the museum you will add the Greek pottery to your itinerary, it is often some of the best painting there.
More tomorrow, I am too tired to continue.


Deb said...

"phalluses and friendly maidens"....
yet another good name for a rock band.

Amazes me that these vessels were created with basically simple tools... hand operated wheels, hand gathered and kneeded clay, hand ground minerals for glazes... just the genius of creative spirits and patience to work hard.... I find it quite inspiring...

went to an art reception in Santa Fe tonight.. first time for me to really hit the "art scene" there.. galleries are thicker than fleas on a dog... good grief.

barbara b. land of boz said...

These are wonderfull, a true painting in the round. If I ever run short of a painting surface I can scrape up some Okie red clay and have a ball. Thanks.....

Simone said...

Nice! I love Antique Roadshow!
Hope all is well with you and yours.

billspaintingmn said...

There is a "Black figured ware" piece of pottery at the museum in Minneapolis. It's beautiful!
I gave a "masterpiece" presentation on it to the school kids over 20 years ago.
I still enjoy visiting to see it.

(Stape, my windex comment is a joke I have with some Greek friends of mine. It's from the movie,"My big fat Greek wedding"
windex is a cure for everthing.)

Stapleton Kearns said...

Painting is a simple thing and can be done with the humblest materials.It is preindustrial.

Stapleton Kearns said...

All you need is a potters wheel a kiln and LOTS of skill.

Stapleton Kearns said...

We are well, autumn is lovely here. This is the beginning of my favorite time of year. It is so moody. I love the deep evening darkness of this season.

Stapleton Kearns said...

I bet it's not at the Walker!