About: David Saunders and Marie Svoboda

David Saunders I’m assistant curator in the Department of Antiquities at the J. Paul Getty Museum and co-curator of Apollo from Pompeii: Investigating an Ancient Bronze. In 2009 I curated The Golden Graves of Ancient Vani at the Getty Villa. I'm currently developing exhibitions on Aphrodite and on a group of large South Italian vases that were restored in the 19th century. Exhibitions aside, my main research interests lie with ancient Greek vase-painting and iconography. Marie Svoboda I'm associate conservator in the Antiquities Conservation Department at the J. Paul Getty Museum. I spent over six years at the Museum of Fine Arts, focusing on the conservation of their Egyptian and Classical collections. At the Getty Villa, I work on exhibitions and loans as well as in-depth conservation and research projects, such as the investigation of our Romano-Egyptian red-shroud mummy, which has culminated in a recent publication, and the examination and treatment of four remarkable Apulian vases, a collaborative project with the Antikensammulung, Berlin. I also hope to initiate a large collaborative study of Roman mummy portraits.

Posts by David Saunders and

Posted in Antiquities, Behind the Scenes, Conservation, Getty Villa, J. Paul Getty Museum

Looking at Apulian Vases in a New Light

Loutrophoros / Greek, 300s B.C.

Since 2008, the antiquities conservation and curatorial departments at the J. Paul Getty Museum have been working with colleagues at the Antikensammlung in Berlin to study and conserve a group of South Italian (Apulian) vases dating to the 4th century… More»

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Posted in Antiquities, Behind the Scenes, Conservation, Getty Villa, J. Paul Getty Museum

Forensic Techniques Illuminate a New Acquisition

Oil jar (lekythos) with a funerary scene, attributed to the Achilles Painter, Greek, made in Athens, about 435–430 B.C. Terracotta, 17 3/4 in high x 5 5/16 in. diam. The J. Paul Getty Museum, 2011.14

The recently acquired white-ground lekythos on display in Women and Children in Antiquity (Gallery 207) at the Getty Villa is a handsome addition to the Museum’s antiquities collection. With its narrow neck and cylindrical body, this popular type of vase… More»

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      Olympian Census #4: Aphrodite

      Get the stats on your favorite (and not-so-favorite) gods and goddesses on view at the Getty Center.

      Roman name: Venus

      Employment: Goddess of Love and Beauty

      Place of residence: Mount Olympus

      Parents: Born out of sea foam formed when Uranus’s castrated genitals were thrown into the ocean

      Marital status: Married to Hephaestus, the God of Blacksmiths, but had many lovers, both immortal and mortal

      Offspring: Aeneas, Cupid, Eros, Harmonia, Hermaphroditos, and more

      Symbol: Dove, swan, and roses

      Special talent: Being beautiful and sexy could never have been easier for this Greek goddess

      Highlights reel:

      • Zeus knew she was trouble when she walked in (Sorry, Taylor Swift) to Mount Olympus for the first time. So Zeus married Aphrodite to his son Hephaestus (Vulcan), forming the perfect “Beauty and the Beast” couple.
      • When Aphrodite and Persephone, the queen of the underworld, both fell in love with the beautiful mortal boy Adonis, Zeus gave Adonis the choice to live with one goddess for 1/3 of the year and the other for 2/3. Adonis chose to live with Aphrodite longer, only to die young.
      • Aphrodite offered Helen, the most beautiful mortal woman, to Paris, a Trojan prince, to win the Golden Apple from him over Hera and Athena. She just conveniently forgot the fact that Helen was already married. Oops. Hello, Trojan War!

      Olympian Census is a 12-part series profiling gods in art at the Getty Center.

      08/03/15

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