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Hartley Artifacts / Textiles

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Standard Top: Master of Animals, Luristan Bronze

10th-7th Century BCE
Luristan, Iranian

This may be one of the two Luristan bronzes cited in Beinecke Library correspondence. Alternatively, this may have been received in exchange with Dikran Kelekian who was one of the leading dealers in Luristan bronzes when the market was developed for these works shortly after 1927. Kelekian was a collector of contemporary work and “liked’ Hartley’s work according to his grand-daughter, Nanette Kelekian. The following observations and bibliography can be used for all the bronzes in the Hartley collection 1951.2.15, .16, .17, .18, .19a and b, and .21. Although these bronzes had appeared in the mid-nineteenth century, the market took off between 1927 and 1929 when a “mass” of bronzes appeared on the market generated by the dealer/historian of ancient Persian art Arthur Upham Pope who was the leading source and according to Kadoi and others “created a demand.” The three leading dealers were Kelekian, Brummer, and Stora. Kelekian was also involved with Pope in the sale of works from Persepolis according to Kadoi. Nanette Kelekian (telephone conversation, May 16, 2020) commented that Iranian dealers often appeared at Kelekian’s Paris gallery unannounced with materials to sell. Good comparisons can be found in the Birmingham Museum, Munich, and the Walters Art Museum (provenanced to Kelekian), and in the current art market. The best analysis of this collecting history is in Yuka Kadoi, ed., Arthur Upham Pope and a New Survey of Persian Art, Brill, 2016. See also Arthur Upham Pope and Phyllis Ackerman eds.,A Survey of Persian Art from Prehistoric Times to the Present, Vol. VII, Oxford University Press, 1938-39, reprinted in 1964-65. See also Gisela Zahlhaas, Luristan: Antike Bronzen aus dem Iran, Munich, Archäologische Staatsammlung München Museum für Vor- und Frühgeschichte, 2002.

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Provenance History
  • Owner Name: Marsden Hartley Estate

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