A ROMAN MARBLE PORTRAIT BUST OF A MAN, TRAJANIC, EARLY 2ND CENTURY A.D.
on an integral trapezoidal base, the head turned slightly to his right, with short beard and moustache, his finely carved hair radiating from the crown and falling in long comma-shaped locks over the forehead; tip of nose restored in marble.
Total height 58.5 cm. Height of head 24 cm.
Tip of nose restored in fine-grained white marble, probably Italian. Edge of proper right ear chipped. Very minor chips and scratches elsewhere.
Surface is alive. Original polish mostly preserved despite mechanical cleaning typical of 19th century. Back of hair lightly weathered. Iron rust stain on proper left shoulder.
Scattered remains of burial incrustation throughout beard and hair.
"In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective, qualified opinion. Prospective buyers should also refer to any Important Notices regarding this sale, which are printed in the Sale Catalogue.
NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS PRINTED IN THE SALE CATALOGUE."
European private collection, 19th or early 20th Century (based on restoration techniques)
Eric Lidow (1912-2013), Los Angeles, acquired prior to 2000
Bonhams, Los Angeles, December 9th, 2013, no. 6, illus. (as 18th Century)
acquired by the present owner on the English art market
Another ancient copy of this portrait type, formerly in the Giustiniani Collection (Galleria Giustiniana, ca. 1640, vol. 2, pl. 24: http://arachne.uni-koeln.de/item/buchseite/41771), is in the Torlonia collection (C. Visconti, I monumenti del Museo Torlonia, 1885, p. 53, no. 79, pl. 20: http://arachne.uni-koeln.de/item/buchseite/429285). For the style of the hair and beard cf. a portrait in New York: P. Zanker, Roman portraits in the collection of the Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2016, p. 156f., no. 54. For the form of the base and bust support cf. a portrait bust in Alanya: J. Inan and E. Alföldi-Rosenbaum, Römische und frühbyzantinische Porträtplastik aus der Türkei. Neue Funde, 1979, p. 264, no. 247, pl. 176.