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Sculpture in Classical Societies, Essay Example

Pages: 3

Words: 954

Essay

Sculpture of Harmodius and Aristogeiton in Classical Greece

Classical Greece produced one of the most amazing forms of sculptures in the history of art. In this period, there was development of the most definitive form of art that expressed individual opinion on societal beliefs, culture and the general way of life. This period in the history of art, is characterized by introduction of freedom of movement and expression in the society which demonstrated the beginning of true independence of man in the society. The statues of Harmodius and Aristogeiton are statues of democracy heroes in Athens. As exemplified by the statues of Harmodius and Aristogeiton which are said to be representing real life features of the democracy heroes, sculptors, through their accurate representation of reality, found ways that they influenced the beliefs and values of the Greeks through their art work. The statues of Harmodius and Aristogeiton depict how the society value independence and those who fight for democracy are respected in the society (Pollitt, 1999). A good example is the show of Harmodius raising a sword in his right hand with another in his left hand. Other statues in this period representing democracy heroes are shown with swords showing how the society in this period liked heroes.

Hellenistic Sculpture: Aphrodite,” Also Known As ‘Venus de Milo by Alexandros of Antioch-on-the-Meander

The statue of Aphrodite is a representation of the Greek goddess of love and lust which was created the Hellenistic period in Greece between 323 B.C.E to around 145 B.C.E. This period in the work of art is said to be the period of second classism. In this period sculptures were made to be visible in all angles and there was inclusion of other features that were not in the classical period. The sculpture in this period also shows a shift in the way that the society was thinking through introduction of expression of emotions in the sculpture unlike in the classical period where sculptures did not reveal any form of emotion. Hellenistic sculptures also reveal the focus on showing emotion rather than perfection which was the main focus in the classical period (Honour, & Fleming,2005). The sculpture of the Aphrodite representing the Greek goddess of love shows how the society was preoccupied with the human body at this time. The sculpture was carefully crafted that it represented all the anatomical features of a beautiful female. It is even said that some men found the statue irresistible and they even kissed it. This shows how sculptors in this period were preoccupied with human body.

Etruscan Civilization, Sculpture: The Sculpture of Apollo Of Velo 500 B.C.E

Etruscan civilization covers the civilization that occurred in the period 800 B.C to 100 B.C in the Etruria region of Italy. The Etruscans were like the Greeks in many aspects and most of their culture especially on art resembles that of the Egyptians than of the Greeks. The Etruscan sculpture like many forms of art in this period was made for religious and other utilitarian purposes. Etruscan were skilled sculptors and most the art in this period was on many materials such as bronze and clay.  The sculpture of Apollo of Velo was made from stone and symbolizes the Etruscan culture and artwork. However clay was the most used material. Most of the Etruscan civilization sculptures have been Hellenized perhaps because of the similarity in the culture and economic activities of this time which are characterized by high commercial activities. Though little is known about the Etruscan culture, there sculptures of clay on funerary objects reveal their cultural similarity with the Egyptians in matters relating to the conservation for the death.  The most defining thing of the Etruscan art is their depiction of their subjects in the most imperfect forms such as overweight. Also common in the Etruscan smile is the expression of emotion of the subjects through the use of the smile as the case of the sculpture of Apollo of Velo. Many artworks of the Etruscans are as part of funeral rites in the Etruscan civilization.

Roman Republic Sculpture Statue Of Aulus Metellus of About 100 B.C.E.

The roman republic sculpture was heavily influenced by the Greece artistry. The most defining feature of sculpture of the roman republic is their aim in showing realistic features (Hallett, 2005).  The statue of the Aulus Metelus includes several features even to the point of indicating shoe lacing. This is because the focus in artwork in this period in time was on realism. They wanted to represent an individual as they are. This is because the Romans worship their ancestors and therefore they sought ways of remembering their dead relatives through creation of replica sculptures. This formed a culture in this period where sculptures of famous individuals were created for future generations.

Roman Empire Sculpture Statue Of Emperor Constantine, 315 C.E.

This is a 30 meters tall statute of the Emperor Constantine, erected in around 315 CE. There were changes in the way that realism was represented in this period. The statue of Emperor Constantine shows how those rich in the society preserved their legacy through erecting replica statues of themselves. The statue, about 30 meters tall is said to represent Emperor Constantine ego and feeling about his leadership.

In this period many sculptures are mainly sculptures of famous and rich individuals in the society. A culture formed where sculptures of such individuals were put on their tombstones. Like the roman republic sculptures they focused on showing individual features in the sculptures.

References

Hallett, Christopher H. (2005). The Roman Nude: Heroic Portrait Statuary 200 BC – AD 300. London. Oxford University Press.

Honour, H. & Fleming, J. (2005). A world history of art (7th ed). London. Laurence King Publishing.

Pollitt, Jerome J. (1999). Art and experience in classical Greece. New York. Cambridge University Press.

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