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Sculpture

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Chapter Summary

There are compelling grounds to believe that Euripides, a well-known intellectual, maintained an interest in the visual arts, perhaps with a special attention to painting. This chapter is devoted primarily to monumental or free painting rather than vase painting because, with a few exceptions, the author is more interested in language and imagery that imply direct knowledge of artisanal practices. A number of Euripidean images appear to reprise the private world newly glimpsed in late Classical Athenian grave reliefs. Multi-figured relief compositions within shallow arched niches replace portraits of the deceased in the round and on stelai, allowing for a much broader range of funerary iconography to be displayed, along with auxiliary effects more common to the art of painting. Perhaps Euripides was moved by the remarkably personal new subject matter in these reliefs and took inspiration from them in minor-key tableaus such as at Supp. 772.

Keywords:Athenian grave reliefs; Euripides; monumental painting; Supp. 772

10.1163/ej.9789004189065.i-494.16
/content/books/10.1163/ej.9789004189065.i-494.16
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