The contributions left by the Greek culture are not few, it marked the history in general in relation to the invention of democracy, in addition, they cultivated philosophy, politics, war and different cultural traditions, among the most outstanding ones the literature with a high religious value and the Greek mythology, which gathers stories about the beginning of the world and its gods.
In art they were skilled in painting, which had funerary, religious and civil themes. They used the tempera painting technique and encaustic with fresco painting, on ceramic supports or wooden boards. Unfortunately, many works have disappeared in looting or have not been preserved to this day.
Sculpture was their main artistic manifestation. The human body was the fundamental motive of his artistic pieces, wanting to represent heroes, athletes, gods and different characters through dynamism, expressiveness, movement and emotions captured in marble or bronze (material in which most of the works were made). It is divided into three periods:
Archaic Period (650 - 500 BC).
It is strongly influenced by Egyptian and Assyrian art. It tends to represent athletes, figures with broad shoulders, small waists and almond-shaped eyes, also called kuros and kores.
The kuros are male figures, which are represented standing, with arms close to the body; while the kores are female figures, whose arms are usually raised.
Another difference between these two types of sculptures is that the kores are represented dressed while the kuros naked.
Classical Period (500 - 323 B.C.)
It shows great perfection, they were concerned about achieving beauty and naturalism in the works, applying strict canons or rules, thus achieving more expressiveness and dynamism, compared to the archaic period, where the figures remained static figures.
The kuros and kores began to be more realistic, disappearing almost completely the rigidity that characterized them in the archaic period.
It continued to represent religious themes, the 12 gods and goddesses of Olympus, minor divinities such as satyrs, centaurs, nymphs, Eros and Psyche, the muses, among others.
Hellenistic Period (600 - 2 A.D.)
So called to all those manifestations made outside Greece after the lands conquered by Alexander the Great.
It was a period whose sculptures exalted the heroes, giving them expressions with much feeling and dramatism. Also, the poses are more diverse and dynamic, representing a great variety of actions and physical states.
The authors did not limit themselves to sculpt religious or heroic themes, their vision broadened and gave way to represent everyday characters such as children, the elderly or animals.
Greek art marks a great reference for Western civilization and certain regions of Europe that will last until today, as they function as classical models for the canons (in this case) of sculpture, which have been recreated to this day.
What do you think? For me everything concerning Greek history (be it mythology, sculpture, architecture, etc.) seems fantastic.
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And if this is the first time you read me, welcome! I invite you to see some of my other art history posts:
Art history - The venus
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