Red-figure pottery kantharos from Apulia, 4th century B.C.

Throughout the 4th century B.C., Athens remained the centre of Greek intellectual life, despite the loss of its political power. On the artistic level, it is a stage that moves from idealized harmony and beauty to expressionism and realism with theatricality. The Kántharos were deep cups, endowed with two opposite handles, which allowed to take the cup with both hands, and a very stylized foot. These vessels were associated with the god Dionysus, whose cup should never be empty according to mythology. Their main function was to be used in banquets and Greek festivities, in which wine would be served. This case is especially particular because its typology is the red figures ceramic on a black background of Apulia. The glass depicts a female face, with beautiful details in dots and vegetal decoration. Also the sinuous shapes of the handles, besides being stylized, resemble the vegetation.


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