Friday, April 27, 2007

Krater by the Niobid Painter

This krater by the Niobid Painter - the name comes from the other side of the vase, which shows the death of Niobe's children at the hands of Leto's two kids -is an interesting example of painterly composition. The figures are arranged on different planes, so that there is more than one ground line, the original ground line firmly established by the reclining figure. Presumably, this is done to achieve a sense of depth. The technique is said to derive from Greek painters, though none of their work has survived. The figures themselves - obviously, this is red-figure technique - are extremely well-achieved. They are not named, though one of them may represent Herakles, and the ensemble may represent the Argonauts.