Saturday, 10 February 2018

History of objects in Virginia exhibition



Colleagues have suggested that I had a look at the exhibition catalogue of The Horse in Ancient Greek Art that will be opening at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts (VMFA) in a week's time. Among the interesting sources for the objects are:

  • Edoardo Almagià: no. 43, Apulian volute-krater attributed to the Virginia Exhibition painter, Fordham University Collection 8.001 [Fordham cat. no. 32]
  • Fritz Bürki: no. 19, Apulian lekythos attributed to the Underworld painter, Virginia MFA 81.55; no. 20, Apulian lekythos attributed to the Underworld painter, Virginia MFA 80.162; no. 26, Corinthian skyphos showing a boar hunt, Virginia MFA 80.27; no. 41, Apulian calyx-krater attributed to the Dublin Situlae group, Virginia MFA 81.81; no. 53.1, Apulian Xenon oinochoe, Virginia MFA 81.82; no. 53.2, Apulian Xenon oinochoe, Virginia MFA 81.83
  • Sotheby's, London (12–13 December 1983): no. 42, Apulian patera attributed to the Baltimore painter, Fordham University Collection 11.003 [Fordham cat. no. 25].
  • Summa Galleries Inc. Beverley Hills: no. 12, a Phrygian terracotta revetment, Virginia MFA 78.62.5. (This looks as if it could be part of the Düver frieze.)
  • Robin Symes: no. 55, Villanovan or early Etruscan bronze horse bit, Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Museum of Art, Indiana University 84.28
The series of acquisitions from Fritz Bürki is particularly significant as Dr Christos Tsirogiannis has written on a Gnathian askos acquired by Virginia MFA in 1980. Not only was this acquired from Bürki but it had previously been handled by Giacomo Medici. Has VMFA conducted a rigorous due diligence search on the series of objects that it acquired from Bürki? Has VMFA contacted the Italian authorities about the controversial askos?

Has Fordham University contacted the Italian authorities about the Almagià volute-krater? And what about the Apulian patera that surfaced at Sotheby's, London in 1983?

We should be grateful to Peter Schertz and Nicole Stribling, the editors of the VMFA catalogue, for printing the histories of the objects.



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