Ancient Art

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Ancient Art

The trip I took to the Getty Museum was very interesting and informational. I had always wanted to go to the Getty and now that I had purpose in writing a term paper on art of ancient civilizations it was worth my time. I mainly learned about art in Egyptian, Greek and Roman culture while I was there.

Before the portrayal of the human body or any piece of art can be critiqued, you must understand the artist's culture. As man evolved over centuries, his views of the body and art transformed. My tour definitely showed the drastic changes in different cultures' art. Each culture and era presents very distinct characteristics. Through time and experimentation, we have expressed our views of the human body clearly with our art.

Egyptians were the first people to make a large impact on the world of art. Egyptians needed art for their religious beliefs more than decoration or self-gratification. The most important aspect of Egyptian life is the ka, the part of the human spirit that lives on after death. The ka needed a physical place to occupy or it would disappear. Most of the important men of Egypt paid to have their body carved out of stone. That was where the spirit would live after the man dies. They used stone because it was the strongest material they could find. Longevity was very important to the Egyptians. The bodies are always idealized and clothed. Figures are very rigid, close-fisted, and are built on a vertical axis to show that the person is grand or intimidating. Most of the figures were seen in the same: profile of the legs, frontal view of the torso, and profile of the…...

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