This week I had the pleasure to present a paper at the International Conference of the National and University Library of Zagreb at Pula City Library in
Having a little spare time before the conference I took the opportunity to
explore some of Pula’s
cultural sights. Some of which date back to the 1st Century AD if
not before. In addition to visiting the Roman Arena and the
Archaeological Museum of Istria in search of inspiring reliefs and statues for
the Early Imperial Roman Army I am currently working on. My efforts were rewarded with a number of
pieces contemporary to the 1st and 2nd centuries.
|1st Century AD Arena at Pula, Croatia|
Sea battle depiction circa 1st or 2nd
This first image is from a relief depicting a sea battle. The figure on the left is depicted wearing a breastplate fashioned in the style of a torso. The figure he appears to be in combat with on his right seen from the back has his sword suspended across his body. This relief suggests that these methods were used at this period.
|The imposing figure from the Temple of Augustus 1st or 2nd Century AD ?|
|Detail of the breastplate|
The remains of a statute, possibly Augustus, has been placed on display in the
Temple to Augustus for a 1962 exhibition in Pula. The remains of the statue offers us a fine example of a breastplate with some extraordinary details of
the head of Medusa over two eagles.
|The Temple to Augustus Pula|
Naturally replicating this level of detail on a 15mm figure is well beyond my skills, nevertheless, having taken the time to seek these pieces out provides me with greater context for future painting sessions on Roman figures. I will be reminded of a delightful few days I spent with colleagues from south east Europe in the beautiful and friendly City of Pula in the future months as I stoop over my work bench painting away.