Archaic period[ edit ] The most important sculptural form of the Archaic period was the kouros plural:
Sicily, southern Italy, and parts of what is now Turkey were all part of "greater Greece". They were important centers of artistic production and the location of many surviving monuments.
For much of its history Greece was divided into city-states. The most important of these was Athens, often considered the birthplace of democracy though slavery and slave labor played a large role in Greek, and later Roman, life.
Athens had a rich literary and artistic culture, which was infused with its civic ideals. The Acropolis of Athens, an ancient citadel, is home to some of the most celebrated monuments in art history, notably the Parthenon - a temple of Athena, the city's patron goddess, built in the fifth century B.
The fifth and fourth centuries B. Pre-Classical art is referred to as Archaic. At the end of the Classical period, Greece was united under the rule of Alexander the Great, who died in B.
Alexander's empire stretched into Asia; the decline of self-ruled city-states and increased contact with the cultures of the Near East altered Greek art as well as Greek life. This is known as the Hellenistic period; it ended with the absorption of Greece into the Roman Empire in the second century B.
Ideals of balance, harmony, and physical perfection were central to Greek art and culture, especially during the Classical period. The idea of life after death was relatively unimportant to the Greeks.
The gods of the Greek pantheon were depicted as human in form, with human concerns. Idealized images of the human body dominate Greek art. Sculpture is the art form most strongly associated with Ancient Greece painting was important, too, but very little has survived, except for vase paintings.
The favored material was marble, which is easier to work and more luminous than some other stones. Greek sculptures were originally heavily painted in strong colors such as red and black, so they looked very different from the pure white objects known to later generations.
Full-length bronze figures were common as well, but fewer have survived. Sculptural depictions of the human body began during the Archaic period; a female figure was known as a kore maidena male figure as a kouros youth. These figures were more stylized and less realistic than those of the Classical period.
Rigidly upright posture and tightly curled hair are characteristic of Archaic sculpture. Classical sculptors such as Polykleitos strove to create a sense of life in their figures through the accurate depiction of posture and musculature, while also observing standards of harmony and proportion.
Much free-standing sculpture of the Classical period is actually known to us through later Roman copies. Hellenistic sculptors placed more emphasis on motion and drama, exaggerating many Classical traits.
Facial expressions and the folds of drapery are deeply carved, creating shadows. The Winged Victory of Samothrace is among the best known examples. Greek architecture shows the same concern with harmony and proportion. Its most characteristic element is the use of columns in one of three styles, known as orders: The columns, like many other elements of Greek architecture, represent the translation into stone of elements of wood construction.
Like Greek sculpture, Greek buildings were once brightly painted.From Archaic to Early & High Classical (3 of 3) The Artemision Zeus: the male human form in motion is the subject of another Early Classical bronze statue, which, like the Riace warrior, divers found in an ancient shipwreck, this time off the coast of Greece itself at Cape Artemision.
One of the major differences between Greek and Egyptian sculpture is that the Greeks tend to carve away as much of the background stone as possible while the Egyptians leave it in tact.
In what ways are Classical statues an improvement over Archaic period statues? was usually rectangular with a center room to house the statue of the god. The difference between an archaic statue such as Kroisos (fig. ) and a classical statue such as Doryphoros (fig.
) may not seem very great in a single glance. In fact, you may not notice any differences in that one glance. Compared with the lifelike statues of the Classical era, Archaic Greek sculpture is rigid and stylized (see Realism vs.
Stylization). The principal types of Archaic sculpture are the kouros (plural kouroi), a nude male statue standing with . In Archaic sculpture, the stance of the subjects are, for the most part, a uniform position. Like other aspects of Archaic art, this stance is very similar to that of the Egyptian art.
The pose of the Classical era is similar to that of the Archaic era, but it is more relaxed.
Compared with the lifelike statues of the Classical era, Archaic Greek sculpture is rigid and stylized (see Realism vs. Stylization). The principal types of Archaic sculpture are the kouros (plural kouroi), a nude male statue standing with one foot forward; and the kore (plural korai), a clothed female statue standing with feet together.