Famous Figures

Sahar Khan | November 29, 2017 | Feature Features

Metallic sculptures and arresting photos make an impression on the arts scene.
“Titus's Roman Triumph” (detail from the Titus dish from the Aldobrandini Tazze) at The Met

Reunited after almost 200 years, the Aldobrandini Tazze (known as the “standing cups”) are a set of 12 silver-gilt cups made circa 1587-99 that are said to have been owned by Cardinal Ippolito Aldobrandini, a nephew of Pope Clement VIII. The cups are more than a foot high and topped with statuettes representing each of the 12 Imperial Roman emperors. The figures are encircled by four scenes from their namesake’s lives taken from Roman historian Suetonius’ biographies of the rulers, including Julius Caesar. The set managed to stay together until 1861—an impressive feat given that surviving silver from the Renaissance is rare, as it was often melted down for cash—after which it was divided beween multiple private collections. Now, The Metropolitan Museum of Art reunites the cups once again with The Silver Caesars: A Renaissance Mystery. The show will be accompanied by ancient Roman and Renaissance coins, medals and paintings, as well as later decorative arts the tazze inspired, to explain their unique place in history. Dec. 12, 2017-March 11, 2018, 1000 Fifth Ave.


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