Attic Black-Figure Column Krater

Object Details


Attic Black-Figure Column Krater


Painter of Munich 1736 (Greek (Attic), active about 520 B.C.)


Greek (Attic)


Athens, Greece (Place created)


about 520 B.C.



Object Number:



47 × 54 × 47.1 cm (18 1/2 × 21 1/4 × 18 9/16 in.)

Credit Line:

Gift of Seymour Weintraub

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Dionysos, the god of wine, stands calmly in the midst of a group of dancing maenads and satyrs on this Athenian black-figure column-krater. Wearing a festive wreath of ivy leaves and holding his drinking horn, the god appears unaffected by the frenzy of his companions. Scenes with Dionysos were a favorite decoration for vessels like this column-krater, which would have been used at a symposion or drinking party to mix the wine with water.

On the other side of the vase, two lions ravage a bull. The motif of the lion attack was central to Greek art and literature from the 800s through the 500s B.C. and served as a metaphor for heroic or even divine triumph. It was referenced in a wide variety of contexts, from the epic poems of Homer, to the sculpture on monumental temples, to the decoration on vases made for private use, such as this one.

Plant motifs decorate the rim of the vessel. Ivy leaves cover the outer edge, and lotus buds encircle the top. The bearded heads on the handle-plates were a typical decoration for column-kraters.

- 1975

Seymour Weintraub, donated to the J. Paul Getty Museum, 1975.

Greek Vases in the J. Paul Getty Museum (January 1 to April 3, 1977)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum (Malibu), January 1 to April 3, 1977
Modern Antiquity: Picasso, de Chirico, Léger and Picabia in the Presence of the Antique (November 2, 2011 to May 20, 2012)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Villa (Malibu), November 2, 2011 to January 16, 2012
  • Musee Picasso (Antibes), February 16 to May 20, 2012

Frel, Jirí. Greek Vases in the J. Paul Getty Museum. January 1 to April 3, 1977, no. 23.

Vallera-Rickerson, I., and M. Korma. "Merika ellenika ekthemata tou Mouseiou Getty." Archaiologia 43 (1992), p. 86, fig. 9.

Oenbrink, Werner. "Ein Bild im Bild-Phaenomen-Zur Darstellung figuerlich dekorierter Vasen auf bemalten attischen Tongefaessen," Hephaistos 14 (1996), pp. 81-134, p. 102; fig. 11.

Schreiber, Toby. Athenian Vase Construction: A Potter's Analysis (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1999), figs. 16.5, 16.11 and 16.16.

Markoe, Glenn. "An Attic Black-figured Column-Krater in Malibu: Dionysiac Sparagmos and Omophagia," Greek Vases in the J. Paul Getty Museum, 6. Occasional Papers on Antiquities, 9 (2000), pp. 45-54, figs. 1a-c.

Hofsten, Sven. The Feline-Prey Theme in Archaic Greek Art: Classification, Distribution, Origin, Iconographical Context (Stockholm: Stockholm University, 2007), p. 62, Ab 20.

Green, Christopher, and Jens M. Daehner. Modern Antiquity: Picasso, de Chirico, Leger, and Picabia (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 2011), 46, 152, no. 3; pl. 6.