By Jeffrey M. Hurwit
The Greeks inscribed their artistic endeavors and craft with labels picking out mythological or historic figures, bits of poetry, and claims of possession. yet no form of inscription is extra hotly debated or extra fascinating than the artist's signature, which increases questions in regards to the function and standing of the artist and the murals or craft itself. during this publication, Jeffrey M. Hurwit surveys the phenomenon of artists' signatures around the many genres of Greek paintings from the 8th to the 1st century BCE. even if the nice majority of extant works lack signatures, the Greek artist still signed his items way over the other artist of antiquity. analyzing signatures on gemstones, cash, mosaics, wall-paintings, metalwork, vases, and sculptures, Hurwit argues that signatures support us check the placement of the Greek artist inside of his society in addition to his perception of his personal ability and originality.
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Additional info for Artists and Signatures in Ancient Greece
And we should not deny the immense power that society and audience exert over the artist: he, too, is a cultural product. 8 So let us just stipulate that artists shape culture and culture shapes them, and move on. Although the kouros type was canonical and eminently reproducible, the genre clearly did not have the power to stifle Euthykartides’ impulse to declare, with his signature, his own identity. These little bits of sculpture [Pl. I] are not anonymous – if a signature is anything at all, it is an overt rejection of namelessness – and for Euthykartides the original dedication was very personal indeed.
67 After the decisive Battle of Pydna in 168 GREEK “EXCEPTIONALISM” IN THE ANCIENT WORLD 11. Signature of Glykon of Athens on the Hercules Farnese, early 3rd century CE. Naples, Archaeological Museum 6001. Photo: author. BCE, Metrodoros was brought to Rome from Athens to paint panels for the triumph of L. Aemilius Paullus. 68 But Rome produced a fair number of great painters of its own, and some of them (at least early on) came from the ranks of the nobility (painting was, again, regarded as more genteel than chiseling hard marble or casting hot bronze).
5];19 or Iuwty, a sculptor who is called “chief artist of the great king’s wife Tiy” and who is depicted working in his studio, along with his assistants, on the wall of GREEK “EXCEPTIONALISM” IN THE ANCIENT WORLD ¨ 5. Stele with portraits of Bek and Taheri. New Kingdom. Aegyptisches Museum, Berlin (AM 31009). Photo: bpk, Berlin/ Staatliche Museen/Margarete B¨using/Art Resource, New York. 20 Many other Egyptian artists of all periods – Ahmose and Ihy and Ibi and Wazi and Penofer and so on – were, again, allowed to insert labeled images of themselves on the walls of tombs, where they would achieve their own immortality.
Artists and Signatures in Ancient Greece by Jeffrey M. Hurwit