STATUE OF ARTEMIS (220 A.D.)
The portrait represents a mature woman with a face that is still full. Her hair is parted in the middle and drawn tightly at the sides, leaving her ears free. At the top of her nape long false plaits form a turban on which an inverted crescent moon is placed. This coiffure, made popularby Marciana, Trajan’s sister, and Matidia, his niece, was also adopted for a time by Sabina, Matidia’s daughter who became Hadrian’s wife.
The attribute attached to the turban assimilates the woman to Diana, which is why the restorer grafted this head on to the body of Artemis (the Greek name for Diana) of the Colonna type — the original, now in Berlin, was formerly in the Colonna Collection — even if it is of an earlier date. The goddess is portrayed as she advances towards the spectator, her left leg placed in front of her right. The abundance of the cloth, slightly restrained by the baldric of the quiver under her left breast, creates a series of tight folds in the overfold. The dynamism of the figure is stressed by the draping of her garment, which is wrapped round her chest and, adhering to her left leg, falls loosely round the right one. The position of the arms, held out in front of her, heightens the impres¬sion of movement. The prototype was modelled with masterly representation of the planes by a bronze-founder trained in the Peloponnesian tradition in the 4th century B.C. The deep and wide traces of the drill used for the folds in the drapery, which are squared and clearly engraved without softening of the outlines, indicate that the Borghese sculpture is the work of a copyist active in the period of the crisis of the Empire.