Portrait Bust of a Bearded Man
Late 2nd century - early 3rd century (re-carved 262-268)
2nd century CE
76.2 cm x 52.7 cm x 27.3 cm (30 in. x 20 3/4 in. x 10 3/4 in.)
Medium and Support:
Blanton Museum of Art, The University of Texas at Austin, Archer M. Huntington Museum Fund, 1980
Ancient Romans made portraits in sculpture to commemorate distinguished persons and to display their lineage. Prominent families proudly placed in their shrines the effigies of their ancestors who held public office or received special honors.
The sitter of this work remains unknown. The contrast between the smooth face and the deeply drilled hair and beard, however, is characteristic of Roman portrait busts created in the late second and early third century CE. Works from this period are also noted for their naturalistic approach to portraiture.