Head of Julia, the daughter of Titus
Marble with polychromy.
Ca. 90 CE.
Inv. No. 58.AA.1.Los Angeles, John Paul Getty Museum, Getty Villa in Malibu

Head of Julia, the daughter of Titus.

Marble with polychromy.
Ca. 90 CE.
Inv. No. 58.AA.1.

Los Angeles, John Paul Getty Museum, Getty Villa in Malibu.

By 1908 — Paul Hartwig, German, 1859—1919 (Rome, Italy);
— Simonetti, Italian (Rome, Italy);
— 1958 — Robert E. Hecht, Jr., American, 1919—2012 (Paris, France), sold to the J. Paul Getty Museum, 1958.
Julia Titi was the daughter of the Roman emperor Titus, who ruled during the Flavian dynasty from A.D. 79 to 81. Recorded in history as a wild young woman who was her uncle Domitian’s mistress, Julia died in A.D. 91 at the age of thirty.

This portrait depicts Julia with a dramatic, curling hairstyle. A diadem originally inlaid with materials such as gold, silver, or gems marked her imperial status. Julia would have worn earrings, probably made of gold, which are now missing; the small holes at either side of her neck indicate the original presence of a now-missing necklace. Traces of paint preserved in Julia’s curls show that her hair was originally a reddish color. The deeply drilled curls and chiaroscuro effect are typical of Roman sculpture in this period.

Portraits of the women in the imperial family set fashions for the entire Roman Empire. A hairstyle worn by an empress or princess would soon appear on portraits of ladies of the imperial court and then spread out through the rest of Roman society as a sign of taste and status. Elaborate curled hairstyles reminiscent of that worn by Julia became the mark of fashionable women in the Flavian period.

2018. Photo, text: The J. Paul Getty Museum.
Digital image courtesy of the Getty’s Open Content Program.
Keywords: απεικόνιση portrait portraiture ritratto ritrattistica porträtmalerei porträt roman romana römisches romain αυτοκρατορικό imperial imperiale kaiserliches impérial gens flavia flavii the flavian dynasty dinastia flavier dynastie famille flaviens γλυπτική sculptura sculpture sculptural scultura skulptur ρωμαϊκό romano romani römisch römische römischen römischer romaine romains romaines κεφάλι κεφαλή head testa kopf tête marble marmor marmo female femminile flavia julia iulia titi giulia augusta flavii flavia noble woman lady donna nobile romana elaborate female hairdo hairstyle coiffure curling pouf frizzle hair-wave acconciatura pettinatura femminile diadem diadema polychromy paint painted colour color coloured coloration colors colouration colours colore colorazione aa 1 inv no 58 aa
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