Roman, late Republican to early Imperial Period, ca. 1st century CE to 1st century BCE. A beautifully made redware pottery bowl, in the Arrentine (Red Gloss) style, first produced in Arrentium (Arezzo), Italy. These objects were made to have a highly reflective surface, meant to recall glass or silver. This particular example has a pronounced foot and two exterior registers, each depicting floral, vine, and crozier-like repeated motifs in low relief. The technique used to finish the slip on items like this one led to its name, terra sigilata, literally "sealed earth". Size: 9.2" W x 3.25" H (23.4 cm x 8.3 cm)
The motifs on this bowl and other types of Arrentine redware were inspired by memories of Classical Athens, where floral motifs often decorated architecture and vessels. The bowl was made by preparing different stamps that could be used as the potter saw fit, with some known examples having combined as many as thirty different stamps. Sometimes further detail was added using a stylus. The result was a functional and beautiful domestic object.
See a similar example that sold at Christie's London in 2008 for ca. $29,000: http://www.christies.com/lotfinder/Lot/a-roman-arretine-pottery-bowl-1st-century-5060740-details.aspx
This piece has been tested using thermoluminescence (TL) analysis and has been found to be ancient and of the period stated. A full report will accompany purchase.
Provenance: ex-Madame Frances Artuner collection, Belgium, acquired in the 1960s
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Repaired and restored, from multiple large and medium pieces, with overpainting, mostly in the interior. Nice remaining motifs.