Wall Fragment with Grotesques

Object Details

Title:

Wall Fragment with Grotesques

Artist/Maker(s):

Unknown

Culture:

Roman

Date:

about 70

Medium:

Fresco

Dimensions:

154 x 43 cm (60 5/8 x 16 15/16 in.)

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While frescoes mimicking outdoor scenes were often painted to make rooms appear brighter and larger, this fresco is purely decorative. Vines and flowers intertwine, interspersed with animals and other decorative elements, all painted onto a red stripe.

Fresco painting was one of the most popular methods of wall decoration in ancient Rome. A wall would first be covered with fresh plaster. Pigments were then dissolved in water and applied to the wet plaster. The combination of minerals in the pigment and carbon dioxide in the air created a solid surface upon drying. Ancient fresco painting yields colorful, enduring works of art, which crack due to the settling of building walls.

Provenance
- 1972

Elie Borowski, Polish, 1913 - 2003 (Basel, Switzerland), sold to the J. Paul Getty Museum, 1972.

Exhibitions
Classical Connections: The Enduring Influence of Greek and Roman Art (December 16, 2003 to November 9, 2008)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center, (Los Angeles), December 16, 2003 to November 9, 2008
Bibliography

Vermeule, Cornelius, and Norman Neuerberg. Catalogue of the Ancient Art in the J. Paul Getty Museum. Malibu: 1973. pp. 46-47, no. 95k.