This book completes John Boardman's study of Greek vase painting in the World of Art. The author demonstrates that all the components of Greek art that were to culminate in the Classical styles of the fifth century can be traced in the development of vase painting in early Greece, from the eleventh to the sixth centuries B.C. The vases are the most prolific source for this study, as well as being invaluable documents of society, religion, trade, and colonization.
The works discussed here display the Greek painter's craft at its most mathematical, its most colorful, and in its most directly narrative mode. The later achievements of Creek art can only be fully understood in light of this formative period of variety, competition, and experiment.