A CYCLADIC MARBLE HEAD
A CYCLADIC MARBLE HEAD
A CYCLADIC MARBLE HEAD
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A CYCLADIC MARBLE HEAD
6 More
A CYCLADIC MARBLE HEAD

EARLY SPEDOS TYPE, EARLY CYCLADIC II, CIRCA 2600-2500 B.C.

Details
A CYCLADIC MARBLE HEAD
EARLY SPEDOS TYPE, EARLY CYCLADIC II, CIRCA 2600-2500 B.C.
5 3⁄8 in. (13.6 cm.) high
Provenance
with Heidi Vollmoeller (1916-2004), Zurich, acquired 1960s.
with The Merrin Gallery, New York, acquired from the above, 1980s.
Private Collection, Canada, acquired from the above, 1990.
Acquired by the current owner from the above, 2015.
Literature
P. Getz-Preziosi, "Nine Fragments of Early Cycladic Sculpture in Southern California," The J. Paul Getty Museum Journal 12, 1984, p. 7, fig 2 (top row, second head from right).
P. Sotirakopoulou, The “Keros Hoard”: Myth or Reality?, Athens, 2005, p. 177, no. 156.

Brought to you by

Hannah Fox Solomon
Hannah Fox Solomon Head of Department, Specialist

Lot Essay

Through comparison to complete folded arm female figures, the dimensions of this impressive head suggest the original length of this example would have been nearly 21 in. (55 cm.) long. The style of this Early Spedos head shares many characteristics of figures assigned to the Steiner Sculptor, including the defined triangular nose, the comparatively deep chin, the grooves at the join of the neck and the elegant backward arch of the forehead (compare no. 33 in P. Getz-Preziosi, Early Cycladic Art in North American Collections and pls. 69-70 in P. Getz-Gentle, Personal Styles in Early Cycladic Sculpture).

Although rarely preserved, most Cycladic sculpture of the Spedos type would have originally been richly painted in red and blue pigment. This figure is remarkable for its preservation of traces of original red pigment on its cheeks, in a pattern often referred to as a “tattoo” of dots. As Getz-Preziosi contends (p. 53 in Sculptors of the Cyclades: Individual and Tradition in Third Millennium B.C.), this pattern “may reflect the way the faces of the dead were painted for burial.” For other Spedos type figures with similar patterning, see figs. 42f-h.
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