The Milwaukee Art Museum may have a small collection of ancient Mediterranean art, but we have some great pieces!
Take, for instance, our two ancient Greek Hydria. Walk into Gallery 1, and you will see them in the free-standing case on the right.
What is so exciting about Greek vases? Well, for one thing, they are some of the only artwork that we have remaining from this important ancient civilization. In particular, their decorations are the only hint that we have of what ancient Greek painting looked like. Practically all ancient painting has been destroyed due to its fragility. Greek vases survived because they were put into tombs and sanctuaries as offerings. In fact, the accident of their survival has made them more important to us than to the Greeks, who for the most part did not seem them as great art and used them as everyday objects.