By Mark D. Stansbury-O'Donnell
Supplying a special combination of thematic and chronological research, this hugely illustrated, enticing textual content explores the wealthy historic, cultural, and social contexts of 3,000 years of Greek paintings, from the Bronze Age in the course of the Hellenistic interval.
• Uniquely intersperses chapters dedicated to significant sessions of Greek artwork from the Bronze Age in the course of the Hellenistic interval, with chapters containing discussions of vital contextual topics throughout all the periods
• Contextual chapters illustrate how more than a few components, similar to the city atmosphere, gender, markets, and cross-cultural touch, inspired the advance of art
• Chronological chapters survey the looks and improvement of key inventive genres and discover how artifacts and structure of the time mirror those styles
• bargains quite a few attractive and informative pedagogical good points to assist scholars navigate the topic, corresponding to timelines, theme-based textboxes, key words outlined in margins, and extra readings.
• details is gifted truly and contextualized in order that it really is available to scholars despite their previous point of knowledge
• A publication spouse site is out there at www.wiley.gom/go/greekart with the next assets: PowerPoint slides, word list, and timeline
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The statues of Kalamis are also hard, although they are softer than those of Kanachos. Even the statues of Myron had not yet been brought to a satisfactory representation of reality, although at that stage you would not hesitate to say that they were attractive. Those of Polykleitos are still more beautiful; in fact, just about perfect, as they usually seem to me. A similar systematic development exists in painting. In the art of Zeuxis, Polygnotos, and Timanthes and the others who did not make use of more than four colors, we praise their forms and their draughtsmanship. But in the art of Aëtion, Nikomachos, Protogenes, and Apelles, everything has come to a stage of perfection. (Cicero, Brutus 70; tr. Pollitt 1990, 223) Brief though it is, this passage has the ingredients necessary for a history. Drawing from earlier Greek sources, Cicero names a series of artists in a chronological sequence, presenting us with a relative chronology of people and events, rather than an absolute chronology based on specific dates. He also tells us about the accomplishments of these artists. The first, Kanachos, created statues of the human figure in rigid postures, whereas his successors developed statues that were increasingly softer and more lifelike in appearance. This happened progressively over several generations, and Cicero singles out Polykleitos as nearly perfect in the way he sculpted the human form. We will see later a copy of a bronze statue called the Doryphoros or “Spear-Bearer” by Polykleitos (see Figure 10. 7, page 243), but for now we can look at a similar figure from the Parthenon frieze that can be given an absolute date between 442 and 438 BCE based on the inscribed accounts of building expenses for the Parthenon (Figure 1. 1). The figure standing in front of the horse touching his head with his left arm stands in a very lifelike pose with the weight to one hip and leg. The muscles and anatomy of the body are articulated accurately and precisely, making him lifelike in appearance. Furthermore, he is a graceful, athletic figure whose nudity allows us to admire his beauty. We can see how Cicero might acclaim a Polykleitan statue of the mid-fifth century BCE as both beautiful and “just about perfect. ” 1. 1 North frieze of the Parthenon, 442–438 BCE. 3 ft 5¾ in (1. 06 m). London, British Museum. Cavalcade. Photo: © The Trustees of the British Museum. In his brief history, Cicero articulates an operating principle for Greek art, and in doing so makes his account more historical and interpretive than simply a chronicle of events and facts. He states, twice, that the purpose of art is to represent reality, and this becomes in turn a standard by which he judges the relative degree of success of the different artists. Not only do statues become more lifelike in their appearance, but they also become more beautiful, making a second criterion by which one can judge art and evaluate the achievements of different artists. Cicero’s two principles, reality and beauty, are not exclusive to Greek sculpture, and are also the standard for his comments on the history of painting.