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Tabella Picta: Dedicatory Paintings in Greek and Roman Religion

Gil Renberg, University of Michigan

September 20, 2019 · 4:30 pm-6:00 pm · 106 McCormick

Department of Art and Archaeology; Archaeological Institute of America

Like reliefs, sculptures and statuettes, paintings were commonly given as gifts to the gods, but since these usually employed more perishable materials – primarily wood or terracotta plaques– relatively few have survived, and thus dedicatory paintings have not received nearly as much attention from scholars as the far more abundant gifts carved out of stone or molded from metal. This lecture explores the full range of evidence for private and public dedications of paintings to the gods: both the extant examples from various parts of the Mediterranean world and the disparate written sources, in order to provide a full picture of this generally overlooked religious phenomenon that once was quite visible at sanctuaries and shrines but now is almost completely lost.

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