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Art December, 31 2010

“How to Read Greek Vases” Book

New from Yale University Press, How to Read Greek Vases by Joan R. Mertens, Curator in the Department of Greek and Roman Art, The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

How is it possible today to gain insight into the culture that flourished in ancient Greece over 2,500 years ago? Works of art are eloquent intermediaries.  This generously illustrated volume provides an introduction to the painted pottery that served specific utilitarian functions and that afforded outstanding artists a medium for depicting their gods and heroes and the details of daily existence. The key to understanding the rich language of the Greek vase is tuning into the interrelation of its function, shape, technique, and subject matter. Notable examples from the Metropolitan Museum’s exceptional collection reveal the variety and vitality of the refined forms and masterfully rendered scenes that characterize these engaging works of ancient Greek art.

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