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Artwork Through the Prism of Civilizations

Art is a very wide discipline and it has evolved into many stages since the start of the existence of mankind on earth. Art can be into two major categories: Auditory art which consists of any artwork that can be heard and visual art which includes all artwork that can be seen by the human eye (Guillermo, 2005). Fine art refers to any artwork which can be created, touched, and seen but has to contain some aspects of beauty.

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Visual art is a form of art that includes all artwork that can be seen by the human eye and the common examples are drawings, painting, and sculpture. Auditory art is another form of art that consists of music, drama, and even spoken literature which is normally recited. Performance art is another form of art that can be auditory or it can be visual and in some cases, it can have a combination of both visual and auditory art.

In Classical Greece, there was a very famous statesman known as Perikles who came up with a monument of Akropolis to symbolize the political and economic power of Athens in Greece. This monument was dedicated to a goddess known as Athena. The goddess was viewed by the Greeks as the patron of the city of Athens (Smith, 2005). The monument, therefore, revealed that the people of Greece believed in many supernatural beings and Athena was just one of the supernatural beings.

The monument influenced the culture of the Greeks by making them a prayerful society because they had to pray to the goddess for protection. The monument was a representation that was used to convey the message of the vitality of life. In classical Greece, artists took a lot of time and dedicated themselves to ensure that they produced pieces of work that were to convey certain messages to people. The monuments were in the genre of sculpture.

During the Hellenistic period, artwork in Greece was transformed and evolved through many stages that had already been set up by classical artists in Greece. During the period of Hellenistic Greece, art was used to express energy and power rather than greatness and power as it was in Classical Greece. In Hellenistic Greece, there was a portrait of Nike of Samothrace that was put at the top part of a sanctuary. The sanctuary was located at the edge of a cliff.

There was a pool of water that was surrounded by rocks to form a beautiful landscape around the artwork. This was another sculpture that was used in Greece to show the human presence of Nike. The twists and deep cuts that were present on the portrait of Nike conformed to the nude body that was contained underneath (Bothmer, 1996). These twists and cuts revealed that some physical human beings used to struggle with any unseen external forces that could attack society. This piece of art made the people in Greece live with the presence of Nike in their minds.

In Etruscan civilization, artistic work was majorly done for religious purposes. For example, sculpture and painting were used in the Etruscan civilization to convey some religious messages to the people. For instance, baked clay and terra-cotta were used to decorate temples. The temples were sacred places where people used to worship and therefore they were decorated to be as beautiful as possible so as please the supernatural beings who were seen to influence all the people who believed in the existence of the supernal beings.

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Paintings that were done on the walls and the lids of tombs where the dead people in Etruscan civilization were buried revealed that the society believed in life after death. Sometimes the paintings were done in such a way to depict figures that were dancing to musical tunes while sometimes they depicted pictures of people performing their daily chores (Smith, 2005). Such paintings influenced the culture of the people by making them lead lives that were morally upright to have a good life after death. Since the people believed in life after death, they also believed that the kind of life an individual had on earth would determine her/his destiny after death.

Art in the Roman Republic was influenced by the arts that the Romans found in Greece. The Romans used to worship their ancestors and this made them develop portraits of their relatives to be seen by later generations that would be worshiping them. A sculpture of Aulus Metellus was made of bronze wearing leather boots while other portraits were made barefoot (Boardman, 1998). This was to reveal that Aulus was so great and powerful that he was not supposed to walk barefoot.

The kind of artwork that was majorly done in the Roman Empire was painting which was majorly aimed at preserving their artifacts. The type of painting that was mostly used was known as the Pompeian mural paintings which were done in every area that was under the rule of the Roman Empire. This reveals that the rulers of the Roman Empire wanted their presence to be felt everywhere. It also made the people in the Roman Empire view their rulers as very powerful people.

Reference List

Boardman, J. 1998. The Late Classical Period and Sculpture in Colonies and Overseas. London: Thames & Hudson.

Bothmer, V. 1996. Live Body Performance Artists and Comparison with other artists. New York: Harper and Raw Publishers.

Guillermo, G. 2005. Art and Experience in Classical Greece. Routledge, London: Woodlands publishing Company.

Smith, R. 2005. Legendary Artists and their Impacts on Civilizations. New York: W.B. Saunders Company.

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