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Aristodamos of Argos  

active: 590 B.C. - 570 B.C. Argos, Greece
Bronzesmith
Greek

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A Greek bronze worker in the early 500s B.C. in the city of Argos, Aristodamos is known from a signature on a bronze shield strap in the Getty Museum. This complete inscription, "Aristodamos of Argos made it," has helped scholars identify other works by the artist. Before the discovery of this inscription, scholars had assumed that the name Aristodamos appearing alone on several shield straps found at the Sanctuary of Zeus at Olympia was meant to label one of the figures depicted on these bands. The Getty Museum's piece makes it clear that these are abbreviated signatures of a maker.

The city of Argos in southern Greece was a center for bronze working in the Archaic period, producing armor as well as sculpture. For an artist to sign his work in this medium and at this time is quite unusual. Aristodamos is one of the first Greek artists known to sign his work, indicating a new awareness and pride in his craft.


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Shield Strap / Aristodamos of Argos
Shield Strap

Greek, 575 B.C.