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March 02, 2015

Ancient Funerary Vases of Southern Italy Explored at the Getty Villa

Imagery and Identity: The Monumental Vases of Ancient Apulia

Thursday, March 5, 2015 at 7:30 p.m.
At the J. Paul Getty Museum, Getty Villa


Emma Jacobson-Sive
Getty Communications
(310) 440-6941

Funerary vessel showing a native Italic warrior (detail), South Italian, from Apulia, 350–325 B.C. Terracotta red-figured loutrophoros attributed to the Darius Painter. Antikensammlung, Staatliche Museen zu Berlin
LOS ANGELES –Ancient Apulia (modern day Puglia in southeastern Italy) is known today for its elaborately decorated vases depicting mythological motifs, many found in funerary contexts. Yet little is known about the people using the vases or the artisans who produced these remarkable works of art. Join archaeologist Thomas Carpenter on Thursday, March 5 at 7:30 p.m. at the Villa Auditorium as he sheds light on the region’s native people in a talk examining the imagery on monumental vases from the 4th Century B.C. and the funerary assemblages in which they were found

Richly decorated with complex imagery and narrative scenes, a number of the vases depict figures in local dress, indicating the distinctive ethnicity of the Apulians, while others draw upon Greek tragedies and point to a deep, sometimes abstruse, interest in Greek myths and theatre. Thomas Carpenter, a professor of classics at Ohio University specializing in Greek archaeology, religion, and iconography, and most recently co-editor of the book The Italic People of Ancient Apulia: New Evidence from Pottery for Workshops, Markets, and Customs, will speak to the ways in which these large figure-decorated vases served as proud statements of identity.

This lecture complements the exhibition Dangerous Perfection: Funerary Vases from Southern Italy, featuring thirteen of these elaborately decorated Apulian vases, on view at the Getty Villa through May 11, 2015.

Tickets are free, but require a reservation is required. To make a reservation please call (310) 440-7300 or visit
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The J. Paul Getty Trust is an international cultural and philanthropic institution devoted to the visual arts that includes the J. Paul Getty Museum, the Getty Research Institute, the Getty Conservation Institute, and the Getty Foundation. The J. Paul Getty Trust and Getty programs serve a varied audience from two locations: the Getty Center in Los Angeles and the Getty Villa in Malibu.

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