The Albert Gallatin Collection

Originally Published in 1935

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THANKS to the extreme generosity of the owner, Mr. Albert Gallatin of New York, one of the outstanding private collections of Greek vases in America has been displayed at the Museum for five weeks. For this exhibit the Filler Pavilion was cleared of the Persian objects previously shown there, and repainted a neutral grey with a brick-and-black cornice. The vases, fifty in number, include two East Greek perfume pots in the shape of helmeted heads, the oldest pieces in the collection, and a Corinthian column krater with scenes of dancers in parallel bands, in addition to forty-seven striking specimens from the potteries of Attica. These are about equally divided between the black-figured ware typical of the latter half of the sixth century B. C. in which the scenes are drawn in black upon a background of the natural clay, and the red-figured ware of the fifth century in which the technique was reversed. The most conspicuous shapes are hydrias and amphoras for water, kraters in which wine and water were mixed, and various forms of wine-cup. Prominent among the latter are rhyta, or plastic cups, moulded into the figure of human or animal faces. Another type well represented is the lekythos, or oil flask; many of these, departing from the usual rules of their periods, are painted in polychrome on a white ground.

An exhibition hall with several cases full of Greek vases
Plate III — The Albert Gallatin Collection of Greek Vases on temporary exhibition in the Museum

Seven hundred members of the Museum were guests of Mr. and Mrs. John Sargent Newbold at tea on the occasion of the opening of the exhibition on January 28th. Mrs. Edith Hall Dohan, Curator of the Mediterranean Section of the Museum, gave a brief but informative lecture on the development of this art.

The Museum’s own collection of Greek pottery has also been reorganised and will remain on permanent exhibition in the Sharpe Gallery. This has been developed into a remarkably complete and instructive study series. In addition, this series is shortly to be augmented by the valuable collection of the Pennsylvania Museum of Art which has long been installed in Memorial Hall. These vases are coming to the University Museum through an exchange loan, and a summary of the collection with special notes on the unique pieces, by Mrs. Dohan, will appear in the next issue of the Bulletin.

Cite This Article

"The Albert Gallatin Collection." Museum Bulletin V, no. 5 (March, 1935): 38-38. Accessed July 25, 2024.

This digitized article is presented here as a historical reference and may not reflect the current views of the Penn Museum.

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