About This Artwork

Greek; Athens
Attributed to the Painter of London E 55 (Manner of Douris)

Rhyton (Drinking Vessel) in the Shape of a Donkey Head, About 480/470 B.C.

Terra-cotta, red-figure technique
H. 20 cm (7 1/8 in.); diam. 9.3 cm (3 5/8 in.)

Museum Purchase Fund, 1905.345

This drinking cup could not have been set down without its contents spilling. It is fashioned after the head of a bridled donkey with a white muzzle, teeth, and ears. Like the naked satyr chasing a fleeing maenad on the vessel’s neck, the donkey belongs to the retinue of the wine god Dionysos. Douris, one of the great Athenian vase painters of first half of the fifth century B.C., decorated this amusing cup.

Exhibition, Publication and Ownership Histories

Exhibition History

The Art Institute of Chicago, Ancient Art Galleries, Gallery 155, April 20, 1994 - February 6, 2012.

The Art Institute of Chicago, Of Gods and Glamour: The Mary and Michael Jaharis Galleries of Greek, Roman, and Byzantine Art, Gallery 151, November 11, 2012 - July 17, 2015.

The Art Institute of Chicago, Dionysos Unmasked: Ancient Sculpture and Early Prints," Gallery 150 and 154, July 31, 2015 - February 15, 2016.

Publication History

Karen B. Alexander, "From Plaster to Stone: Ancient Art at the Art Institute of Chicago," in Recasting the Past: Collecting and Presenting Antiquities at the Art Institute of Chicago, by Karen Manchester, (Art Institute of Chicago/Yale University Press, 2012), p. 25.

D.M. Buitron, Douris: A Master Painter of Athenian Red Figure Vases (Mainz 1995), p. 87, no. E 18, pl. 129.

--. "Galleries and Museums," The Chicago Reader, (Sept. 15, 1995), pp. 17, 19 (ill.).

K. Alexander, "New Gallery," Minerva: The International Review of Ancient Art and Archaeology 5, no. 3 (May/June, 1994), p. 30.

J.G. Pedley, “Ancient Art at The Art Institute of Chicago”, The Art Institute of Chicago Museum Studies 20 (1994), pp. 41-43.

E.C. Keuls, The Reign of the Phallus (New York 1985), pl. 289.

J.R. Guy, The Late Manner and Early Classical Followers of Douris (0xford DPhil thesis; 1982), pp. 27-8.

W.G. Moon and L. Berge, Greek Vase-Painting in Midwestern Collections (Chicago 1979), pp. 190-191, no. 107.

M. Wegner, Duris (Münster 1968), p. 218.

Beazley, J.D. Attic Red-Figure Vase Painters. Volume II, (Oxford: The Clarendon Press, 1963), p. 445, no. 259.

H. Hoffman, Attic Red-Figured Rhyta (Mainz 1962) 15 and 45, no. 120, and pl. 23, nos. 3-4.

Daniel Catton Rich, "A Rhyton in the Brygan Manner, in International Studio (Aug. 1931), pp. 20-21, 74, figs. 1 and 2.

D.C. Rich, "A Rhyton in the Brygan Manner", American Journal of Archaeology 34 (1930), p. 53.

D.M. Robinson, C.C. Harcum and J.H. Iliffe, A Catalogue of the Greek Vases in the Royal Ontario Museum of Archaeology Torinto (Toronto 1930), p. 171.

Bulletin of the Art Institute of Chicago (1928), pp. 131-2.

Collection Eugène Piot, Antiquités (Paris 1890), p. 47, no. 172.

Catalogue des objets d’art… qui composent les collections de feu M. le Comte de Pourtalès-Gorgier (Paris 1865), p. 41, no. 171.

J. de Witte, Description des Antiquités et objets d’art qui composent le Cabinet de feu M. le Chevalier E. Durand (Paris 1836), no. 1278.




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