Object in Focus: The Orpheus Relief Project
University of Georgia
Athens, GA 30602-6719
This project involves the public exhibition and interdisciplinary study of an important but little-known ancient marble relief sculpture with vestiges of ancient painting, which is in the David M. Robinson Memorial Collection of Greek and Roman Art at the University of Mississippi Museum. Mark Abbe, assistant professor of ancient art at UGA’s Lamar Dodd School of Art serves as designer of the project, which will involve working with UGA’s Center for Applied Isotope Studies, department of chemistry and department of classics.
The youthful figure of Hermes, the Greek messenger god, survives from a larger, three-figured composition depicting the god escorting Eurydice to the Underworld during her final parting from Orpheus. This larger composition, known as the Orpheus Relief, is one of the most celebrated examples of Greek sculpture from the High Classical period, ca. 450–400 B.C.