(Back to front) Junior Chloe Rijke, junior Carrie Bieganek, Associate Professor of Classics Eric Hutchinson, and Assistant Professor of Classics Laury Ward examine art.
Bryan Springer | Courtesy

Some 2,500 years ago, one industrious artist painted hundreds of ceramic Greek vases, adorning them with scenes of military and mythology. This year, the Princeton University Art Museum organized an exhibition of the anonymous Berlin Painter’s work, drawing more than 50 of the vases together from 15 private collections from the British Museum to the Vatican’s Museo Gregoriano Etrusco.

On Sunday, several dozen students and professors from both the classics and art departments visited the Toledo Museum of Art to see this exhibit. 

“It was a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to see all of these pieces from museums across Europe and the U.S. together in one place,” Associate Professor of Classics Eric Hutchinson said.

Titled “The Berlin Painter and His World: Athenian Vase-Painting in the Early Fifth Century B.C.,” the exhibit includes dozens of vases painted by the Berlin Painter, as well as more than 80 vessels and statuettes from the time period. 

Named when a scholar studied one of his vases at the State Museum of Berlin, the Berlin Painter is characterized by the elegance and precision of his figures.

Senior Rachael Reynolds said she appreciated the artistic technique in his work. 

“Kind of amazing how they could actually pull that off,” she said.

Some vases were pieced together from fragments, but others were practically intact.

“The condition of most of the vessels is truly amazing,” senior Brian Hall said.

“It was a great opportunity to see an exhibit I would not otherwise be able to,” he said.