The J. Paul Getty Museum

Comic Mask

Object Details

Title:

Comic Mask

Artist/Maker:

Unknown

Culture:

Greek (South Italian, Tarantine)

Place:

Tarentum (Taras), South Italy (Place Created)

Date:

300–200 B.C.

Medium:

Terracotta with white slip and polychromy (brownish red, pink)

Object Number:

96.AD.247

Dimensions:

9 × 8.4 × 9 cm (3 9/16 × 3 5/16 × 3 9/16 in.)

Credit Line:

Gift of Barbara and Lawrence Fleischman

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Object Description

The mask features a rounded skullcap with two holes for hanging in the upper section of the head. The oval face presents a convex forehead with a cleft at center, high arched eyebrows above half-closed eyes, a long thin nose, puffy cheeks, and a broad mouth with an ambiguous smile. Fleshy lips frame the wide-open mouth; the jaw is prominent and features a full, dimpled chin. The hair is painted red and forms a crown of radial striations around the forehead. These characteristics associate the mask with the New Comedy character Colax, an adulator (or vain flatterer).

Provenance
Provenance
- 1974

Thomas Virzi, Italian, 1881 - 1974 (Munich, Germany)

by 1994 - 1996

Barbara Fleischman and Lawrence Fleischman, American, 1925 - 1997 (New York, New York), donated to the J. Paul Getty Museum, 1996.

Bibliography