Roman, Imperial Period, ca. 1st to 2nd century CE. Finely carved in the round from white marble, a youthful Bacchus (Greek Dionysos, also Dionysus) - god of wine, theater, ecstasy, and rapturous ritual madness - holding a large bunch of grapes. Bacchus is rendered in the nude save the nebris (fawn skin) draped across his body and falling behind his back; his naturalistic navel, buttocks, and genitalia are revealed. A stunning rendering of Bacchus which though fragmentary presents an outstanding form with well-preserved details and musculature. Size: 6.75" L x 12.125" W x 15.625" H (17.1 cm x 30.8 cm x 39.7 cm); 19.875" H (50.5 cm) on included custom stand.
Though a fragment, one can see that the left leg is slightly advanced which suggests that Bacchus was rendered standing in contrapposto with his weight shifted to his right leg. One can also detect the beginnings of an s-curve and the gentle torque of the torso. Given this, the sculptor of this statue was likely familiar with classical Greek renderings of Dionysos, such as the work of Praxiteles. Clearly the sculptor subscribed to the Roman's desire to render the body with naturalism. Imagery of the young Bacchus (Dionysos) was very popular under Hadrian's reign (117 to 138 CE). Perhaps this piece was created during this period or earlier.
Provenance: ex-Barakat Gallery, Beverly Hills, California, USA, acquired prior to 2000
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A fragment of a larger statue missing head and limbs as shown. Expected surface weathering with some abraded areas. Overall, an exquisite sculpture exhibiting fine technique and a strong form.