I'm back from vacation in Southern California! I don't recommend air travel, Disneyland, or the Getty on a gimpy leg necessitating being pushed around like a luggage cart but it was still a good trip. My fabric haul was mostly quilt related, so not really applicable to this blog, but I did get to visit the Getty Villa, which has a wonderful collection of Greek and Roman art, great for my collection of source material on Roman clothing! Yay! Of course, they also have lots of images on line but there's something about seeing the pieces in person and in life-size that makes all the difference. Plus you can take pictures close up of whatever details you want and from odd angles.
I haven't uploaded my pictures yet, so these are all from the Getty's website, but will give you some idea of what's in the collection and what I found particularily inspiring:
A Portrait of a Woman as a Cybele is quite large and striking. I like how she has her palla draped leaving one arm bare, and the crown/diadem on her head (though that might be what sets her apart as a cybele). Something about her pose in the gallery was quite relaxing and natural. She just seemed comfortable, sitting there with her little critters.
Leda and the Swan not cloths, but her hair is pretty and for some reason I just love this piece. It's not huge in person, but strikingly beautiful and amazingly well preserved. Probably my most favorite sculpture in the villa.
Faustina the Elder another way to wear a palla, this time much more modestly. In person, it looked like the palla was tucked into the belt of her tunica somehow, which made me feel vindicated as I have done that myself to control the inside end of palla. I also like the hair piled up on top of her head.
Muse what you can't see from the museum's picture is that she's got her hair in a ponytail! The gallery this statue was in had several other muse's in it and at least one other was also working the ponytail look, which made me very happy. They both looked to have hair that hung to just below the shoulders, maybe the middle of the shoulder blades at the longest. Very cool on several levels, though again since it's a muse and no a portrait it's hard to say if a normal person would ever wear her hair that way.
Roman Necklace this was probably my most favorite piece of jewelry in the collection, it looks like something you could get today in a better jewelry store. They actually had a reproduction of it in the museum store ($250, which isn't really bad at all). They have a pretty good collection of jewelry and such, which you can look at here. Lots of rings, but there are some of lovely necklaces and burial diadems as well.