Exekias Belly Amphora

By Gerald Andrews,2014-08-12 08:58
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Exekias Belly Amphora ...

    Exekias Belly Amphora


    ; Exekias painter and potter: “Exekias painted and made me”



    ; Grand style:

    ; Large figures

    ; Formal composition

    ; Large narrative & elegantly painted

    ; Attempt to show realism

    o Horse hair falling down helmet

    o Tyndareus‟ himation has a series of folds, adds sense of texture & depth


    ; Belly Amphora

    ; A two handled vessel for storing liquid (oils & water or grains, nothing precious)

    ; Exekias may have invented this type of vase ; 61cm high

    ; 540-530BCE

Inscriptions and Meanings

    ; Kalos inscription “Onetorides is beautiful”

    ; “Four” and “three” – allude to type of game being played ; All figures identified

Description of Decoration

    ; Side A

    ; Ajax and Achilles playing a board game

    ; A scene from a poem where they were playing as they were attacked by the Trojans

    ; Achilles on left, is the dominant figure as he has his full-body armour and his helmet. Taller than


    ; Ajax on the right

    ; Shields either side of the scene.

    ; Side B:

    ; Return of the dioskurri

    ; Castor in the centre behind his horse

    ; Polydeuces playing with a dog to the far left ; Queen Leda and King Tyndareus and a boy flank Castor


    ; The Vase:

    ; Two friezes centred around belly of the vase ; Bordered at the bottom by a double groundline ; Bordered on top by a lotus and palmette chain ; Handles separate the two main friezes & are decorated with heart shapes on single lines

    ; Rest of vase is black, except for a ray band at the base. ; Side A:

    ; All figures on a single groundline

    ; Composition very symmetrical

    ; Game in the centre framed by two figures whose curving backs mirror the shape of the vase

    ; Their heads form an apex, so a triangle is formed ; Reverse triangle formed by their spears, which lean in the opposite direction & can be traced to be

    in line with the handles, as do the shields

; Side B

    ; All figures on a single groundline

    ; Symmetry through horse being flanked by two figures on either side

    ; Three mini-scenes occurring:

    o Polydeuces with the dog

    o Tyndareus patting the horse

    o Leda offering a flower to Castor

; Illustration of depth as the viewer looks in three different places.


    ; Emphasis on detail, not depth

    ; Cloaks of Achilles and Ajax decorated with amazing detail: stars, spirals and flowers

    ; Realism shown as Achilles‟ cloak bulges where his leather corslet should be ; Side B, King Tyndareus‟ himation has a number of folds, giving an impression of depth

Black Figure:

    ; Incision

    ; Eyes

    ; Hair and beard incised with fine lines ; Muscles incised but not in a realistic style ; Detail on shield

    ; Horse‟s main and muscles incised realistically

    ; Detail on Achilles‟ and Ajax‟s cloaks

    ; Added Colour

    ; Shields and corselets in white

    ; Satyr‟s heads on the shields in purple

    ; Castor‟s cloak is red

    ; Black Silhouette

    ; All figures


    ; Poses

    ; Poses all in profile

    ; Castor‟s head facing the opposite direction, very unrealistic ; Overlapping

    ; Castor is placed behind the horse

Narrative technique

    ; Inscriptions labelling the characters ; Movement: dog on Side B jumping up at Polydeuces

Lydos Column Krater


    ; Attributed to Lydos


    ; Grand style:

    ; Large figures

    ; Formal composition

    ; One narrative, continuous frieze

    ; Movement is free, with a variety of gestures and expressions


    ; Column Krater - Mixing wine and water at the symposium ; 57cm high

    ; 550 540 BCE

Description of Decoration

    ; Continuous frieze

    ; Dionysus accompanies Hephaestos back to Mt Olympus from Mt Etna (workshop) ; Hephaestos was the lame God and blacksmith of the Olympiads. Was thrown out of heaven by Hera

    after trapper her on a golden throne.

    ; Dionysus got Hephaestos drink and led him back to Olympus to free her


    ; The Vase:

    ; Scene framed above by band of tongues, alternating black and red ; Decorative band of lotus and palmettes on the brim of the vase ; Narrative framed by two wide bands of black glaze that draw attention to the figures

    ; Framed below by two red bands

    ; Frieze

    ; Balanced composition: Dionysus one side, Hephaistos the other. Separated by revelry of the party

    ; Most figures in profile

    ; Three figures either frontal or partly frontal features ; All figures, including Hephaistos on his donkey are the same height ; Large figures fill the frame approximately 25cm tall

    ; Some allowance for handles


    ; Mostly solid without folds like Francoise vase, but also with lines to simulate folds.

    ; Incised to show design on the fabric

Black Figure:

    ; Incision

    ; Drapery

    ; Tails

    ; stippling

    ; Added Colour

    ; Red/purple to detail clothing, wineskin and Dionysus‟ robe

    ; White for skin of maenads

    ; Coral red on stylised tongue design

    ; Black Silhouette

    ; All figures


    ; Overlapping

    ; Satyr stands behind the horse of Hephaistos

Narrative technique

    ; Actions: arms raised, legs lifted, feet off baseline to show dancing revelry ; Pose: full frontal satyr face to show emotion

    ; Gestures: arms raised

    ; Motifs of Dionysus: vines, ivy, wine. Godly functions are wine and orgiastic revelery.


Achilles Lekythos


    ; Achilles Painter (no inscription) - Student of the Berlin Painter

    ; One of the last artists to draw his outline in slip ; Potter Unknown


    ; White Ground Funeral Ware

    ; Mainly used for funerary vases

    ; Not handled so much, often buried

    ; Decoration would last longer, durability of decoration not so important

    ; A lot of colours able to be added

    ; Fragile white slip made it impractical for everyday use th; Visually striking, used extensively from the middle of the 5 century BCE onwards


    ; Lekythos - Used for funerary rites to carry perfume and oil. ; 38.4cm high

    ; 450 440 BCE

Inscriptions and Meanings

    ; Kalos inscription “Deiophathes, the son of Alkimachos, is handsome” between the 2 figures

Description of Decoration

    ; Woman receives a casket from her maidservant, directing with her right hand

    ; Behind them, there is a mantle and a lekythos on the wall, indicating they are indoors

    ; Is likely the woman is preparing to visit a tomb


    ; The Vase:

    ; Because it is a small, narrow vase the frieze takes up most of the space

    ; Is bordered to the base by a white band and at the top by a stylised meander pattern then a

    stylised palmette pattern interrupted by the one handle, then a tongue pattern, and finally black

    ; Frieze

    ; Balanced by the two figures


    ; Some fold lines, but not the zig-zagging

    ; Dress of the maidservant now transparent

    ; No evidence of billowing

White Ground

    ; White Background

    ; Honey Coloured Dilute Glaze

    ; Outline of maids body and clothing

    ; Non-fireable colours (green, yellow, orange)

    ; Yellow for mistress‟ chiton & red-bron for her himation


    ; Poses

    ; Aloof and not interactive

    ; Woman‟s feet facing the front while body is in profile

    ; Detail

    ; Facial expressions of the characters seem aloof from the scene

    ; Eyes of the figures seem to gaze past each other ; Nose painted in detail, with a single line used ; Necks of characters longer than usual

    ; Faces more realistic, less involved.

Narrative technique

    ; Mantle & lekythos indicating indoors

    ; Not much attempt to show movement. Woman‟s hand outstretched.

Euphronios Calyx Krater


    ; Euphronios


    ; Pioneers

    ; Carefully arranged compositions of multiple figures on large vases ; Reknowned for interest in depiction of human form and movement ; Greater attempt to show emotional realism

    ; Pain despair and anguish clearly visible

    ; Muscles now well-rounded, clearly shown, bulge realistically with strain of action.

    ; Experimentation with different poses: foreshortening, twisting, ? pose


    ; Calyx Krater

    ; Used for mixing wine and water at symposium drinking parties ; 46cm high

    ; 510 - 500

Inscriptions and Meanings

    ; Euphronios signs his own name as a painter “Euphronios Egrapsen”

    ; All figures named in purple glaze

Description of Decoration

    ; Side A

    ; Herakles fighting a Libyan giant Antaios.

    ; Story comes from 12 labours of Herakles had to strangle the giant but could only defeat him when

    the giant was lifted off the earth.

    ; Earth was the giant‟s mother and gave him strength, therefore could only be killed in air

    ; Side B:

    ; A youth stepping up onto a platform about to play a lute ; Audience consists of 3 youths


    ; The Vase:

    ; Double lotus palmette chain at base

    ; Top: single lotus and palmette chain

    ; Figural ornamentation above the foot, but is damaged ; Side A:

    ; Central triangle: figures of Herakles and Antaios frozen in action. ; W Shape: central triangle framed and extended into a w shape by the addition of two female


    ; Single groundline nd; Equipment of Herakles mirrored by 2 supporter of Antaios

    ; Females slightly smaller, on each side and behind men. One outstretched arm


    ; Attempt to create natural looking drapery

    ; Female supporter of Herakles wears a elegant chiton and himation ; Bery narrow lines show folds in the linen

    ; Falls into crispy zig-zag lines

    ; Gives the impression of movement

Red Figure:

    ; Raised Relief line

    ; All major figures

    ; Dilute glaze

    ; Honey coloured glaze added to giant‟s hair and Herakles‟ lionskin

    ; Painted Interior Detail

; Black slip used to pain interior musculature e.g. on Antaios‟ muscles


    ; Giant‟s legs: first attempt at foreshortening

    ; Muscles and poses so well executed

    ; Use of foreshortening

Narrative technique

    ; Motifs of Herakles: bow, quiver, knobbed club, animal skin ; Inscriptions names of characters

    ; Herakles depicted as civilised, Antaios as a barbarian ; Action: clearly a wrestling match, adds vitality to the scene.

    Kleophrades Painter Pointed Amphora Painter

    ; Kleophrades Painter

    ; Attributed to another vase signed by Kleophrades the potter ; Unknown potter, likely Kleophrades

    ; A student of Euthymides


    ; Late Archaic Style

    ; Figures monumental (imposing yet elegant)

    ; Student of Euthymides interest in foreshortening, movement and attention to detail

    ; Thickness of chiton and himation thickness of lines

    ; Fabrics flow behind maenads suggesting movement

    ; Hooks and zigzags fullness of drapery

    ; See human form beneath drapery


    ; Pointed amphora

    ; Storing wine and oils, could not stand by itself ; 56cm high

    ; 500-490BCE

Inscriptions and Meanings

    ; None meaning conveyed through characterisation

Description of Decoration

    ; Scene encircles the vase

    ; Side A:

    ; Dionysus in centre of the vase with a vine, amongst revelling satyrs and maenads

    ; Flanked by two maenads, one fending off a satyr with a thrysos and the other turning away from a

    satyr and carrying a snake

    ; Side B:

    ; Satyr playing the a double flute (aulus). Either side of him are also two maenads who are in ecstasy.

    ; Upper frieze:

    ; Two separate mini-friezes. Not joined, don‟t encircle the neck. A degree of symmetry

    ; Side A: 3 athletes playing sport, throwing javelins and discuses ; Side B: 3 Athletes and sponge bag and Aryballos


    ; The Vase:

    ; Three friezes, one on belly, two on neck

    ; Handles interrupt the neck friezes

    ; Neck sharply set off from the body

    ; Central frieze bordered by a stylised meander pattern to the bottom and a tongue pattern in the


    ; Ray band pattern on the very narrow base

    ; Neck:

    ; 3 athletes either side

    ; Not continuous

    ; Main frieze

    ; Encircles entire vase

    ; Single groundline

    ; Unlike other friezes, characters aren‟t linked by a central character, but by the characterisation of the figures


    ; Material thickness shown by the closeness of the lines ; Maenads dressed in chitons and himations

    ; Chitons: move with their body, end up in zigzags at their feet, very thin, almost transparent, can

    see outlines of legs underneath

    ; Himations: flowing, swirl and flair out as the maenads dance, end in zigzags and points at their


Reg Figure:

    ; Raised Relief Line

    ; All figures

    ; Dilute Glaze

    ; Ivy

    ; Hair of one of the maenads ; Kantharos carried by Dionysus ; Animals skins

    ; Snake

    ; Added interior detail

    ; Facial features

    ; drapery


    ; Detail

    ; Used for expression

    ; Mouth of frenzied maenad open, and other maenad looking into space indicating in a trance

    ; Pose

    ; ? pose seen in aulus playing satyr and the athletes.

    ; Arms of maenad swinging

    ; Most of characters still in profile, including Dionysus looking over his shoulder ; Foreshortening used e.g. foot of maenad

    ; Overlapping

    ; Satyr mounting maenad has his leg behind her

    ; Athletes‟ javelins overlap

    ; Foot of frenzied maenad in front of satyr. Also extends over base of frieze

Narrative technique

    ; Motifs:

    ; Dionysus: satyrs, vines, cup, animal skins, ivy wreath

    ; Maenads: carries a thrysos (staff of fennel stalk , cap of ivy leaves), comfortable handling a snake,

    leopard skin, satyrs

    ; Satyrs: bearded, hairy, unkempt hair and beard, often depicted with an enlarged phallus to portray

    fertility. Leader may play the aulus. Goat like in appearance ; Clearly depicted narrative theme/mood

    ; one of quiet abandonment” – (Hannah)

    ; Shown through Maenads (eyes in trance like gaze, heads throuwn back ; Movement of Satyrs and nakedness suggest inhibition has been removed

    Kleophrades Painter Hydria


    ; Kleophrades Painter


    ; Late Archaic

    ; (see Kleophrades Painter Pointed Amphora)


    ; Hydria

    ; Used for carrying water. 3 handles

    ; 45cm high

    ; 500 480 BCE

Description of Decoration

    ; Shows the sack of Troy by victorious Greeks.

    ; The whole frieze runs continuously around the vase, between the neck and the shoulder

    ; Divided into specific triangular groupings which each tell a story from the fall of Troy

    ; Aeneas flees from Troy

    ; Aeneas carries his father Anchises away from Troy ; His father has a stubbly beard showing old age like King Priam ; See the back of Aeneas, staggering under the weight of his father ; Hope: Aeneas flees to found a new Troy

    ; The Rape of Cassandra

    ; Nudity emphasises her rape

    ; Mercilessly he grabs her by the hair

    ; She seeks refuge in the sanctuary of Athena statue of Athena known as the Palladium, the most sacred object in Troy

    ; Cruelty: sacrilege and the seizing of a prophetess

    ; Crouching Trojan Women

    ; A Trojan woman covers her ears in terror, cowering behind the statue of Athena

    ; Trying to block out the sound of war: emphasises the helplessness of women in war

    ; A tree bends emphasising the destruction

    ; A woman tears her hair out as a sign of mourning

    ; Despair: Many Trojan women were sold into slavery

    ; The death of King Priam

    ; Depicted as an old man covering his head about to be struck ; Lying across his lap is limp body of his grandson Astyanax, lifeless and bloody

    ; Neoptolemus son of Achilles about to deliver the fatal blow ; Cruelty: Murder of Astynax. His body was mutilated.

    ; Heroism of a Trojan Woman

    ; Greek warrior crouches behind his shield

    ; Fully armed, contrast with unarmed woman

    ; She is armed with a large pestle or table leg, emphasising her despair ; Courage: a Trojan woman fights back against a fully armed Greek man.

    ; Rescue of Aithra

    ; Grandmother of Theseuas and the two soldiers

    ; Taken to Troy to act as Helen‟s maidservant

    ; Liberation: Aithra rescued by her grandsons. Only scene to show Greeks in a good light


    ; The Vase:

    ; Scene runs continuously around the vase

    ; Ends with the two shields. Both of the two end scenes are thematically connected hope and liberation.

    ; A very difficult place to paint due to the shape being much smaller at the top compared to the

    bottom triangular segments framed by positions of bodies or trees/statues

Red Figure:

    ; Raised Relief Line

; Dilute Glaze

    ; Added Interior detail


    ; Full s curve of nostril

    ; Eyes open at inner corner instead of common frontal eyes ; Lips full and outlined

    ; ? technique

    ; Intricate design on Neoptolemus‟ armour

Narrative technique

    ; No inscriptions

    ; Recognisable story

    ; Moods shown.

    o Greeks not shown as heroes

    o Portrayed as cruel and vicious

    o Scenes full of emotion

    o Emotions portrayed through body movements of the people

    o Emphasises negative aspects of war

    o Sacrilege, enslavement, murder and rape rather than heroism & bravery

    ; Themes of: courage, hope, liberation, sacrilege, cruelty, enslavement, murder, rape.

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