|Research and Conservation|
|About the J. Paul Getty Museum|
|Museum Home Current Exhibitions|
May 23, 2012–April 21, 2015 at the Getty Villa
On loan from the National Archaeological Museum in Athens, a stele honoring Prokleides, a military officer in the Athenian army, is on view at the Getty Villa in a gallery (208) devoted to Religious Offerings. Carved in relief above a public decree are figures of Antiochos, the mythical founder of the tribe Antiochis, and his father, the Greek hero Herakles.
Both political art and religious votive, the stele was discovered in 1922 in the foundations of a house in the Athenian neighborhood of Dourgouti. In antiquity, the area was known as Kynosarges and was the site of a public gymnasium and a sanctuary of Herakles. Finds of several other inscriptions mentioning the tribe Antiochis suggest that a shrine to Antiochos was located in the vicinity.
Conservation and Documentation
To enhance legibility of the faint letters, Getty Imaging Services teamed with Antiquities Conservation to apply an innovative technique known as Reflectance Transformation Imaging (RTI), a two-phase process involving photographing the inscribed slab at varying degrees of raking light. Uploaded to software, the images were combined to create a mathematical model of the object's surface. Within the RTI viewer, the direction and intensity of light was manipulated with filters to enhance areas of interest. In the final composed image (left), the shallow writing appears with unprecedented depth and clarity, revealing several previously undocumented letters along the broken lower edge.
About the National Archaeological Museum in Athens
The National Archaeological Museum is the largest museum in Greece and one of the world's great museums. Although its original purpose was to secure all the finds from the 19th-century excavations in and around Athens, it gradually became the central National Archaeological Museum and was enriched with finds from all over Greece.