Working in Athens in the period from 510 to 500 B.C., the Nikosthenes Painter decorated vases in the red-figure technique. Primarily a cup painter, he was not an especially good artist. Much of his work is hasty and sloppy, but occasionally he seemed to rise above his usual standard. While he favored scenes of athletes, warriors and Dionysiac revels, he also painted some mythological scenes. As with most ancient artists, the actual name of the Nikosthenes Painter is unknown; he is identified only by the stylistic traits of his work. He takes his name from the signature of the potter Nikosthenes, known today from three vases that the painter decorated. More frequently, the Nikosthenes Painter worked for the potter Pamphaios, a younger craftsman who succeeded Nikosthenes as head of the workshop.