An extraordinary achievement in terms of its artistic rendering of the human body, its masterful carving of details, and its profound philosophical meaning, Balthasar Griessmann's large ivory goblet in the J. Paul Getty Museum celebrates wine and explores the benefits and risks of its consumption. Culminating with an allegory of youth, it challenges the viewer to think about the degree to which pleasure and duty play their parts in our making life choices.
This handsome gift book is illustrated with stunning photographic details and includes an essay that traces the visual and literary sources that inspired Griessmann's designs. Although the cup's maker was long considered a master of German Baroque ivory carving, Griessmann was identified by name only fifteen years ago. This photo essay and analysis is the first overview of Griessmann in the English language.
Eike D. Schmidt is director of the Department of European Sculpture and Works of Art at Sotheby's, London, and formerly associate curator in the Department of Sculpture and Decorative Arts at the J. Paul Getty Museum.
Available June 2009