A Pair of Late 18th Roman Porphry Vases and Covers.
With robust bulbous body on Greek Porphry bases. The narrow neck and the heavy gadrooning suggest that the designer or maker of these vases was heavily influenced by ancient prototypes, such as those found in the Church of Santa Maria in Porto, Ravenna, see D. Del Bufalo, Porphyry, Turin, 2012, p. 139, fig. V13A. Roman craftsmen were fortunate to be exposed to a large number of antique porphyry vessels by which their artistic activity was greatly inspired. The lack of ormolu mounts further suggests that these vases were intended as pure recreations and not reinventions of ancient models. Fashioning the bases out of green porphyry signals not only the maker’s, or commissioner’s, knowledge of and interest in ancient stones, but it also gives these vases a distinctively Roman feel as the Eternal City was famous for luxurious and vibrant stonework in the eighteenth century.
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