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Attic Black-Figure Pelike By The Plousios Painter
Attic Black-Figure Pelike By The Plousios Painter

On either side two bearded males, himations wrapped about their waists, sit playing a board game. Only four other vases known by this painter. An important work of art.

Ca. 520-510 BC

H. 14 1/2 in. (36.2 cm.)

Ex E. Borowski collection, Basel; C.H. collection, Ann Arbor, Michigan.

Exhibited: Royal Ontario Museum, 1984; Yale University Art Museum, 2003-2015.

Pub:.: D. von Bothmer, ‘Les vases de la Collection Campana.’ Revue du Louvre 27 (1977) 216; R. Guy in N. Leipen, et al, Glimpses of Excellence, 1984, no. 7; J. Eisenberg, Art of the Ancient World, vol. XII, 2001, no. 199.

The same scene, with but slight variation in detail, decorates both sides of the vase. Two bearded males, each with stick in hand and himation wrapped closely about legs and waist, sit opposite one another at a gaming table. A large skyphoid krater, with oddly shaped handles, stands at their feet; a sapling in the background betokens a setting outdoors; and a small camp-stool contrasts with a more elaborate chair at right, whose curved back terminates in a duck’s head. One player has thrown a two; he signals two with the index and middle fingers of his raised right hand. His companion bends forward to retrieve the dice and take his turn. Gaming with six-sided dice or four-sided knucklebones was a popular pastime in ancient Greece. The nonsense inscriptions are scattered about the figured panels. There is a graffito under the foot.

Dr Dietrich von Bothmer has recognized the hand of the painter of the Borowski pelike on four other vases: pelikai in the Louvre and the Vatican; and neck-amphorae in Boston and Haifa (the latter two once assigned by J. D. Beazley to a ''Smithy Painter"). Bothmer has christened his artist the Plousios Painter after an invocation to Zeus for wealth inscribed on the Vatican example.

Published and attributed to the "Plousios Painter" by D. von Bothmer, "Les vases de La collection Campana”, Revue du Louvre 27 (1977), 216. For the shape, D. von Bothmer, "Attic Black Figured Pelikai," JHS 71(1951), 40-47; and further, C. M. Robertson in the Burlington Magazine 119, 1977, pp. 81-82; R. M. Becker, Formen attischer Peliken von der Pionier-Guppe bis zum beginn der Frühklassik, Tübingen, 1977. For the repetition of scenes on the same vase, K. Schauenburg, “Zu Repliken in der Vasenmalerei,” AA ,1977, pp.194-204. For heroes gaming, J. Boardman, "Exekias," AJA 82, 1978, pp. 18-21.


Attic Black-Figure Pelike By The Plousios Painter
Attic Black-Figure Pelike By The Plousios Painter

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