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Ceramic Artwork in Ancient Greece - Essay Example

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This essay considers the nature of ceramic artworks in ancient Greece and provides insight into how they affect our world today, argues that this ceramic art forms maintain contemporary relevance both for their exquisite design and artistry, and the evolving nature of an art form. …
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Ceramic Artwork in Ancient Greece
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Download file to see previous pages Mosaics date back nearly 4,000 years with the use of terracotta cones in the ground for decorative purposes. By 800 B.C. civilizations were implementing mosaics in pavement. Even as the history of mosaics dates back thousands of years, the ancient Greeks are recognized as the first who raised the form to an art. In these regards, they were oftentimes combined with ceramics in the creation of compelling and functional art forms (‘The History’). Indeed, the nature of ceramics also constitutes a significant element in terms of art in Greek antiquity. Indeed, while ceramics constituted a significant functional category within Greek art, as their durability was conducive to ancient life, they also came to be recognized for their art and design. This essay considers the nature of ceramic artworks in ancient Greece and provides insight into how they affect our world today.
While ancient Greek ceramic artwork is perhaps most prominently associated with the periods Greek culture experienced the greatest intellectual and political prominence on the world stage, in reality it dates back to as early as 1050 B.C. This stylistic period is referred to as the protogeometrical period, as the ceramic artworks lack the clearly defined geometrical patterns that later artworks would take on (Jones 1985). Even as these ceramics appear crude in comparison to later designs and appear in the Greek ‘dark ages’, there is nevertheless a sort of raw charm to their design structure. Rather than developed pictures and narrative depictions, the designs during this period represent wavy line patterns, and various shapes. While today they are recognized as perhaps the earliest of the major form of Greek ceramic art work the linear and shape design patterns have a timeless quality that gives them perhaps the most contemporary design relevance. By the 9th century B.C Greek ceramic artwork moved into the geometric period. Just as the protogeometrical period had been defined as it lacked developed geometrical craftsmanship, the geometrical period experienced more structurally advanced ceramic form (Jones 1985). The era also witnesses an explosion of Greek art in other forms, with ceramics only representing one particular aspect of Greek expression. This era also witnessed a more uniquely Greek form of ceramic expression. While in large part the protogeometric period expressed Minoan influences, the geometrical period was uniquely Greek in form (Stefan 1977). In terms of tangible designs, this era witnessed more developed and stylistic triangular shapes and models, with less emphasis on linearity that the protogeomtric period advanced. During the middle geometrical period human figures behan to appear on the ceramics. This represents a significant moment in Greek culture as it constitutes the beginning of a mythology that is still recognized by contemporary scholars. Ultimately, This is relevant for a contemporary audience as it demonstrates a path of cultural articulation that can perhaps be located within modern day Western mythological expressions (one thinks of politicians being featured on currency as a major example). This predominant form of ceramic artistic expression continued until the 7th century when the Orientalizing period took hold in Greek forms of expression. As one might surmise, this period was considerable influenced by Asian forms of expression. Still, predominant Greek mythological forms were expressed. This period is perhaps unique as it hybridizes Greek art, including Eastern forms of palmettos and lily’s, along with traditional Greek warrior figures. In addition to being a more advanced and seemingly narrative driven artistic style, the period also demonstrated an increased recognition of the work of individual artists; this is not because of a sort of glorification of the artist, but rather due to scholars being able to identify the creations of individual artists because of the more developed ceramic forms. In terms of the contemporary world, one notes that as this ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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