Magna Graecia, Southern Italy, Apulia, ca. 325 BCE. A wonderful ensemble of two Greek Apulian vessels featuring Lady of Fashion paintings. First, a red-figure decorated lekanis with small footed lower "cup" and spooled lid, painted with the ubiquitous Lady of Fashion on opposite sides - each one wearing a kekryphalos hairstyle, earrings, and a beaded necklace - separated by palmettes, the knob handle painted with black rays, and the rim of the lid adorned with a running wave motif - all with added/fugitive white and yellow paint. Complementing this piece is a red-figure skyphos with added/fugitive white and yellow paint decorated on each side with an elegant Lady of Fashion donning a radiate stephane, sakkos, beaded necklace, and drop earrings - a palmette and tendrils below each handle, striations just above the foot, a ring under the foot, and a band of sinuous wave motifs under the rim. Size: lekanis measures 3.875" W x 3.875" H (9.8 cm x 9.8 cm); skyphos measures 5" W x 3.25" H (12.7 cm x 8.3 cm)
The Lady of Fashion motif is often thought to depict a young woman on her wedding day, and lidded lekanides were cosmetic containers, often given by fathers to brides on their wedding day. In addition, some scholars believe that such pottery with imagery representing brides or youthful women was made to be placed in the tombs of lovely ladies.
Provenance: private Carlton collection, Los Angeles, California, USA, acquired between 1965 and 1980
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