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FAH102 Week 7.docx

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Week 7Collecting and CollectionsHarold Osborne Museums and Their Functions Journal of Aesthetic Education vol 19 no 2 Special Issue Art Museums and Education Summer 1985 pp 4151 jstor o In antiquity a museum was an institution devoted to the encouragement of literature learning and included a regular cult with priests and ritual for the worship of the MusesServed as a center for scholars and poets philosophers and scientists and until emperor Caracalla noted scholars and scientists were supported their by public endowment o The most famous museum in antiquity was the literary academy founded at Alexandria o Prominent artists were employed to paint murals for municipal buildings and templesThe famous and popular artist Polygnotus received Athenian citizenship for painting free of charge The Capture of Troy and The Battle of Marathon for the Stoa Poikile o Modern conception of museum or gallery devoted to the assembly and preservation of famous works of the past intended primarily for the edification and delectation of the general public was foreign to antiquity o Private collecting is usually thought to be started when in the third century BC the Hellenistic rulers of Pergamum and Alexandria bought and commissioned works for the beautification of their palaces o During the Middle Ages artistic production was mainly subservient to the purposes of the Church both for selfglorification and for the edification of the populace o Private collecting was renewed at the Renaissance and the word museum came to denote the study of the humanist scholar or prince where he assembled objects of historical or ethnological interest th Works began to be collected for aesthetic reasons as well during the 16 century first in Italy and later about middle of the century also in the northLater very many of these private collections devolved into public ownership and became the nuclei of such historical and ethnological collectionsThe public collections today are a result of the spread of democratic ideas which followed the French RevolutionIn ancient Greece the flourishing city states were the prime patronsIn Hellenistic times wealthy princes and aristocrats took overFrom the time of the Renaissance the influence of wealthy princes and aristocrats was combined with that of the church until the Academics took into their hands the formalization of tasteThe impressionists survived and flourished only because the owners of private galleries found purchasers whose taste refused to be confined within the restricted canons of the Academics o Museums are publicly owned and financed
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