Magna Graecia, South Italy, Campanian, CA Painter school, probably Painter of New York GR 1000, ca. 340 to 330 BCE. A monumental hydria of a pristine form w/ finely executed red-figure compositions featuring a woman standing in a naiskos, donning a chiton with a beaded bandolier, holding a wreath and a mirror. To the left, a standing warrior wearing a classic crested helmet, a breast plate over his tunic, and greaves, holds a spear and shield. To the right is a seated woman, draped in a mantle to her waist, holding a patera, with a kafathos below. Size: 10.5" W x 18.125" H (26.7 cm x 46 cm)
Adding to the iconographical program are several characteristic decorative motifs including a large palmette with tendrils below the handle, a band of wave motifs beneath the figurative scene, and vertical frets adorning the neck. Characteristic of Campanian wares, the terracotta is of a comparatively pale shade, and added/fugitive white and yellow pigments are used liberally to highlight jewelry, feet, handheld objects such as mirrors, weapons, wreaths, and pateras, as well as general highlights.
Unlike in Athens, almost none of the potters and vase painters in Magna Graecia signed their work, thus the majority of names are modern designations. The Cumae designation emerged around the middle of the 4th century. Its founder is regarded as the CA Painter and there are three main stages, Cumae A, Cumae B, and Cumae C. The general understanding is that from 330 onwards, a strong Apulian influence grew more visible. This vase appears to fall into the late Cumae A group, its iconographical programs and style resulting in an attribution to the Painter of New York GR 1000 whose work like that of the Boston Ready Painter continues the traditions established by the CA painter, and is profoundly impacted by the APZ (Apulianizing) Painter as was the CA painter during the latter part of his career.
A bell krater attributed to the Painter of New York GR 100 resides in the Metropolitan Museum of New York collection (accession number 96.18.25 on view in Gallery 161). Another bell krater attributed to this painter is published in A.D. Trendall's "Red Figure Vases of South Italy and Sicily" figures 319-320.
A Campanian red-figured bell-krater attributed to the Painter of New York GR 1000 realized $11,875 at Christies, New York - 10 June 2010 - Lot 99 (http://www.christies.com/lotfinder/Lot/a-campanian-red-figured-bell-krater-attributed-to-the-5321801-details.aspx). Keep in mind, that example was a bell krater. The one featured here, being a fine hydria form with a more elaborate painting program is far superior. What's more, our example was listed by Christies with an estimate of $8,000-$12,000 and realized $7,638 way back in 2001! See http://www.christies.com/lotfinder/lot/a-campanian-red-figured-hydria-attributed-to-the-2063471-details.aspx?from=salesummery&intObjectID=2063471&sid=363de9cc-c844-43ae-84ac-e34f12976c2a
Provenance: Ex-private collection of James Farmer, Maryland, Ex-Christies, 8 June 2001, Lot 178 (copy of catalogue entry included); Ex-Asian Collection, purchased between 1968 and 1972
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