Visual ambiguity in the oeuvre of the Gela Painter: a new lekythos from Thessaly
Volioti, K. (2007) Visual ambiguity in the oeuvre of the Gela Painter: a new lekythos from Thessaly. Rivista di Archeologia. pp. 91-101. ISSN 0392-0895
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This paper presents a previously unpublished Attic lekythos and discusses visual ambiguity as an intentional drawing style used by a vase painter who conceptualised the many possible relationships between pot and user, object and subject. The Gela Painter endowed this hastily manufactured and decorated lekythos with visual effects that drew the viewer into an inherently ambivalent motif: a mounting Dionysos. This motif, like other Dionysian themes, had a vogue in late Archaic times but did not necessarily invoke chthonic associations. It had the potential to be consumed in diverse contexts, including religious festivals, by a wide range of audiences. Such images were not given to the viewer fully through visual perception but through interpretation.