It is still difficult today to identify how marble was used in southern Italy. Most of the marble used for sculpture throughout Magna Graecia is generally identified with marble from the Aegean islands. More precise identification is hampered by the intrinsic difficulty of identifying specific types of white marble and, more importantly, by the relatively few studies of statues from Magna Graecia that have been undertaken to-date. The latter is due to the fact that, up until a few decades ago, scholarly opinion maintained that Magna Graecia had no independent production of marble sculpture before the Hellenistic period. This was largely based on the region’s lack of the necessary primary material. Since there were no marble quarries that could have been used for sculpture in Southern Italy, the Greek colonies there had to import marble from abroad, particularly from the Aegean islands, which were their closest supply, were culturally similar, and had well-developed trade. The dependency on importation plus the relatively few marble sculptures discovered in Magna Graecia have contributed to a lack of scholarly interest in this subject. Instead, research has favored other areas that better represent the culture of Magna Graecia, such as terracotta or bronze. Because marble works were assumed to use imported material (commonly attributed to the islands, and sometimes Paros), a further assumption was made that the artists were also of Greek origin. In fact, is the identification of the stone itself, rather than a work’s artistic and stylistic characteristics, that has been the basis for identifying it with a particular artist or school. However, our view of sculpture in Magna Graecia has been modified over the last decade, both by specific studies made of regional sculpture and by new finds that broadened the range of sculptures available for study. Today, opinion tends to favor the existence of local production (starting from as early as the end of the Archaic period), based on evidence of the development within local workshops. These workshops were established initially by immigrant artisans but quickly demonstrated their own formal characteristics. Well-defined stylistic elements have been identified in many sculptures from Magna Graecia, leading to the conclusion that they are products of a regional school, operating in a manner similar to and in parallel with centers of production in Greece during the Archaic period. A few works from Taranto and Metapontion, for example, could have been made by local artists. The present papers proposes that a preliminary sampling from sculptures of Magna Graecia should be carried out in order to understand the way in which Aegean marble (particularly Parian) was used. It would also be relevant to extend the study to include marble used for architectural elements, including frontal pediments (Locri; the Heraion of Cape Lakinion at Croton) and marble roofing, such as found at the temples of Caulonia and Metapontion (Temple C, II) and the Heraion in Croton.
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|Titolo:||Il marmo di Paros nell'Italia meridionale. Problemi del commercio e della diffusione|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2000|
|Nome del convegno:||Paria Lithos|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||4.1 Contributo in Atti di convegno|