Lecture 6.pdf

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Near & Middle Eastern Civilizations
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M.A.Pouls- Wegner

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Topics: Lecture #6 Art September-26-12 Language & Script 2:03 PM Homework: Important Points: Lecture Topic: During the lecture, take notes here. Insert a sub-page for each lecture topic. • The Canon of Proportion ○ To reproduce ideal body form  Grid-system ○ In most periods  18 squares for standing figure (from hairline to bottom of feet)  14 for the seated figure ○ Each grid-square measured 1 palm • Deviations in various periods • BUT ○ Principle of "measurable perfection" remains the same • Relief ○ Around the late 4th/ early 3rd millennium BCE (raised and sunken) ○ Basic principles already in place:  Most characteristic view of each elementof body represented in its most recognizable way  Combiningprofile and frontalviews □ Face - Profile  Eye - frontal □ Shoulders and chest - Frontal □ Legs - Profile (one before the other) ○ In sum  Two-dimensional image is a hieroglyph or symbol  Abbreviated way of conveying the greatest amount of information with a minimum of effort • Perspective vs. Aspective ○ Egyptian art before late NK  No interest in representing object or room as seen  i.e. in Perspective □ Important to show the most characteristicview  Would "damage", or "limit"  Bagel-typeimage flipped up to show what it is ○ Instead  Most characteristic view of each element represented in its most recognizable way  As many "important" aspects as possible conveyed □ Aspective • Aspective and Status: Hierarchy ○ Representing many people together, will try to express hierarchical structures  Most dominant towering over everyone else  Wife sometimes shown squatting at feet at the man's side of the monument  Many minions shown around the man, much smaller than man  Would particularly happen with king, king ten times larger than enemies • Gender conventions ○ Women generally representedsmaller than men ○ Usually seen deriving her status from husband or father ○ Woman shown as yellow, men brown ○ Men striding, women with feet closed ○ Children sometimes shown at legs to show support ○ Woman's arms around husband to show her support ○ Children always shown smaller than parents ○ Children typically have shaved heads with one lock of hair, "lock of youth" • Temporal (or spatial) succession ○ Things shown inside of a building, you have sections ○ God shown in shrine that is cut open to show that he is in there ○ Funeraryprocession shown in comic book fashion, one after the other, in stages • "Static"/ Ordered Egyptian vs. "Dyamic" / Chaotic Foreigner ○ Egyptians saw themselves as center of created world, foreignerscome from outside world ○ Foreignerscan be depicted in a different way  Can be upside down, moving around, limbs flailing □ Can show movement NMC 101 - Land of the Pharaohs Page 1 □ Can show movement □ Contorted faces  Even if foreigners are "good", still artistic freedom □ Foreign kings could look almost Egyptian, queen is shown fat--> disrespect? • Member of the Elite vs. Lower Classes ○ Most important being usually shown larger ○ Movementand artistic freedom related to hierarchy  Lower ones representedwith lots of movement  Not in upper class, can be represented with artistic freedom  Can get away with it with lower classes ○ Once someone (a dwarf?) enters the realm of the upper class, is shown by the same rules (proportions) • Historical Development ○ Rules of human representation broken/amended at times  Private image reflects changes in royal image of the time ○ Requirement of perfection  King gets to determine, to some extent, what perfection is ○ Rules can be amended at various times
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