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Lecture

VISA 1Q99 Lecture Notes - Beehive Tomb, Peplos Kore, Kritios


Department
Visual Arts
Course Code
VISA 1Q99
Professor
Kristin Patterson

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VISA 1P90 - Sept. 26, 2011
Funerary mask of Tutankhamun, ruled 1332-1322 BCE: Died at 19, changed his name.
Tomb had lots of art, items of value.
Egyptian conventions are quite recognized by now.
Mummy wrapping of a young bou, c. 100-120 CE Roman Period: Conquered by
Alexander the Great, a lot of different mixing of Egyptian art and Greek/Roman art.
Aegean, Ancient Greek and Hellenistic Art:
Sea faring nation, comfortable at sea. Stable settlements by the Bronze age. In Crete,
the first center of power and wealth would develop, the Minoan civilization. Crete is the
largest of the islands and was very self sufficient. In the 1900’s, Arthur Evans purchased
the site and excavated it.
Reconstruction of the palace complex, Knossos, Crete: We do not know the structure of
the society, so it may be misleading to think of this as a place complex. There were
courtyards, workshops, storage space, and even tablets were found.
Bull jumping, reconstructed wall painting from palace complex, Knossos, Crete. Late
Minoan Period, c. 1550-1450 BCE: The bull has a “flying gallop” position. Animals are
depicted with four limbs flying outwards. Male and female present, females are depicted
with pale white skin. Minoans are associated with Minotaurs.
Mycenaean's dominated over the Minoans.
Reconstruction of the Citadel at Mycenae: Very strong outer walls. One entrance into
the citadel, two secret passageways out that not everyone would have known about.
People would have entered through the Lion Gate, Mycenae, c.1250 BCE. It had two
lions guarding the doorway made of stone. The lions have no heads now, but it is
believed that the heads may have been made of separate materials.
Cutaway drawing of Tholos tomb (Treasury of Atreus) Mycenae, c. 1300-1200 BCE:
When it was first discovered it was thought to be a treasury, not a tomb. There are more
than 100 of these tombs are found in Greece.
Corbeled vault, interior of tholos tomb (Treasury of Atreus): Used corbelling, meaning
the rocks would slowly peak to one rock at the top.
Ancient Greece:
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Greeks all came together in order to host the first Olympics. A real interest in what it
means to be a God or a hero. “Man is the measure of all things” -Greek saying. Very
human art, sculptures are realistic. Zeus is the king of the Gods, God of the sky.
Funerary Vessel (Krater), from Dipylon Cemetery, Athens 750-700 BCE: Found near
Athens. Large scale, very detailed. Very typical of geometric period. Each individual
section is framed. Lots of geometric pattern. Focus is on life more than death. Body
forms are very simplified, but we have no trouble identifying what is occurring. The
family of the deceased would have had this made, would have some wealth.
Archaic Period (c. 600-480 BCE): Greek orders: Doric order, Ionic order, Corinthian
order. A lot of court houses/museums mimic these orders in architecture.
Anavysos Kouros, from cemetery at Anavysos, near Athens c. 530 BCE: Most figures
are nude males. Tendency towards life size, carved completely around. Freed
completely from the block. Interest in studying the human figure, looking at it and using
sculpture to convey it. Like the Greeks, one foot is before the other, very rigid. These
had a number of different purposes, mainly grave markers or offerings.
Peplos Kore, 530 BCE: Very similar to the male Kouros, a grave marker of some sort. A
suggestion of organic form in the arms and face. Remnants of pigment. Still a
suggestion of form beneath the clothing. Wearing a linen sheet which was associated
with goddesses.
Archalc Vase Painting
Exekias, Amphora showing Achilles and Ajax playing game, 540-530 BCE: There is an
interest in narratives or stories. Figures aren’t fully articulated, still a profile eye. No real
full sense of 3D space. A lot of detail into clothing/armor. Achilles wins over Ajax, the
word four is written by his mouth, and three by Ajax’s. Achilles is depicted as larger, and
is wearing his helmet.
Foundry Painter, A Bronze Foundry, red-figure kylix 490-480 BCE: More of a sense of
organic form. By a foundry painter, which is a painter who’s style is recognizable but the
name is unknown. Found in Italy. Interest in foreshortening.
Early Classical Period (480-450 BCE)
Kritios Boy, c. 480 BCE: Athens is one of the main cultural centers. This is attributed to
Kritios as it bears similarities to other works that are also named Kritios. There is still
some stylization of this figure, and the flesh seems to look organic, as if it’s covering
muscles and bone. Resting or passive expression on the face. It is an idealized
expression, thought to be the most beautiful expression. There is a slight bend to the
right leg, and the left leg looks as though it could perhaps hold up the body. Hip and
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