Unidentified artist

Greek, 4th century BCE

Bearded Man from a Grave Stele, c. -375


28.8 x 20 x 21 cm

Collection of the Winnipeg Art Gallery; Gift of Mr. R.A. Purves and Mr. John A. MacAulay, Q.C.



Sculpture, International Art

This life-sized head of a bearded man from a Greek grave stele is carved from a white marble with micaceous streaks, likely Pentelic, and dates from the late fourth century BCE. The man is shown with a short beard and closely cropped hair with some curls, the carving achieved through short chiselled tufts. The man’s facial features, including the well-defined brow line, sunken, almond-shaped eyes, prominent cheekbones, parted lips, and a trace of a moustache with the beard, can be found in other late fourth-century BCE Greek stelae. Similar facial features often appear in father and son portraits for grave stelae, in which case this head depicts the younger man. The WAG head bears a strong resemblance to a Greek sculpture of a bearded man in the Musée Rodin, Paris, which is securely dated to the third quarter of the fourth century.

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