Statuette of a Griffin with an Arimasp

Object Details

Title:

Statuette of a Griffin with an Arimasp

Artist/Maker(s):

Unknown

Culture:

Greek

Place(s):

Italy (?) (Place created)

Date:

125 - 75 B.C.

Medium:

Bronze

Dimensions:

7.9 cm (3 1/8 in.)

Credit Line:

Gift of Barbara and Lawrence Fleischman

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Holding an arm in its beak, a griffin, a creature part eagle, part lion, and part snake, mauls a young Arimasp wearing only a helmet. The creature's front paw presses on the youth's head as he tears the lifeless body limb from limb. In Greek mythology, griffins lived far to the north of the civilized world and guarded large deposits of gold. They were in constant conflict with the Arimasps, a tribe of one-eyed people, who regularly tried to steal the gold. Although literary sources always describe the Arimasps as one-eyed, visual artists did not follow this convention as seen here. Greek artists usually indicated that the Arimasps were uncivilized by dressing them in barbarian clothing; this nude rendering is unusual. Traces of an attachment on top of the statuette suggest that this group was originally part of some larger object or composition.

Provenance
by 1989 -

Atlantis Antiquities, Ltd. (New York, New York)

Nicolas Koutoulakis (Geneva, Switzerland)

- 1991

Jean-Luc Chalmin (London, England), sold to Barbara and Lawrence Fleischman, 1991.

1991 - 1996

Barbara Fleischman

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

Exhibitions
A Passion for Antiquities: Ancient Art from the Collection of Barbara and Lawrence Fleischman (October 13, 1994 to April 23, 1995) (105)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum, (Malibu), October 13, 1994 to January 15, 1995
  • The Cleveland Museum of Art, (Cleveland), February 14 to April 23, 1995
Transforming Tradition: Ancient Motifs in Medieval Manuscripts (September 23 to November 30, 2003) (105)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center, (Los Angeles), September 23 to November 30, 2003
Bibliography

Atlantis Antiquities, New York. Ars and Techne: Art and Craft of the Graeco-Roman World. Exh. cat., 1989. no. 8.

True, Marion, and Kenneth Hamma, eds. A Passion For Antiquities. Ancient Art from the Collection of Barbara and Lawrence Fleischman. The J. Paul Getty Museum. Malibu: 1994. pp. 214-15, cat. no. 105.

"Museum Acquisitions Between July 1, 1996, and June 30, 1998." The Report of the J. Paul Getty Trust, 1997-1998. p. 65.

The J. Paul Getty Museum Handbook of the Antiquities Collection. Rev. ed. (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2010) p. 111.

Mattusch, Carol C. Enduring Bronze: Ancient Art, Modern Views (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2014) p. 57, fig. 34.