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ARTEMIS GALLERY Rare Etruscan Bronze Mirror Handle - Caryatid & Feline

CAD $24,496.86 or Best Offer Unsold, 14-Day Returns

Seller: artemisgallery (683) 100%, Location: Louisville, CO, Ships to: Worldwide, Item: 381802082888 Details: Rare Etruscan Bronze Mirror Handle - Caryatid & Feline Northern Italy, Etruria, ca. 5th century BCE. A solid cast bronze figural handle of an Etruscan mirror, the elegant form depicting a female caryatid figure with a feline perched upon her left shoulder whose front paws grasp the scrolled Ionic capital atop her head. The Etruscans were greatly influenced by the Ancient Greeks incorporating their mythological subjects and decorative motifs into their visual culture. Hand mirrors are among the most significant Etruscan visual sources, so valuable not only for their beauty but also for the information they have provided historians about Etruscan mythology and religion. The caryatid which originated in ancient Greece was a sculpted female figure that functioned as an architectural support replacing a standard column or pillar and actually supporting a temple's entablature. The most famous caryatids were created for the south porch of the Erechtheion gracing the Acropolis of Athens. This lovely caryatid supported the face of an Etruscan mirror that was likely inscribed with a scene of daily life, mythology, or religion. She wears a peplos and himation that is meticulously incised with detail and clings to her body allowing us to see the dynamic positioning of her hips and legs, a noble attempt at classic contrapposto. Her hairstyle is plaited with beautiful scallop forms framing her beautifully delineated face and a low chignon at the back. The cat perched upon her shoulder is depicted quite naturalistically, climbing in a realistic manner, likely pursuing avian prey. Cats have made many appearances in Etruscan art, featured on vases and Bucchero ware as well as tomb frescoes. According to scholars, the Egyptian domestic cat was most likely introduced to the Etruscans by the Phoenicians. For more information about the feline form in Etruscan culture, see De Puma and Small, "Murlo and the Etruscans: Art and Society in Ancient Etruria" (University of Wisconsin Press, 1994). In a word, breathtaking, this rare mirror handle boasts gorgeous green patina, an exemplary form, finely modeled and incised details, and rich iconography. Custom, museum-quality stand. Size: 2.25" W x 6.25" H (5.7 cm x 15.9 cm) #114054 Condition: Old breaks to left hand and feet. A handle from a larger mirror, but quite an exceptional example. Provenance: Ex-private German collection, acquired in 1990s. All items legal to buy/sell under U.S. Statute covering cultural patrimony Code 2600, CHAPTER 14, and are guaranteed to be as described or your money back. All items come with a Certificate of Authenticity

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