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The Art of the Bronze Age Agean

by: Madeleine Kern

The Art of the Bronze Age Agean ARH 204

Marketplace > University of Oregon > Art History > ARH 204 > The Art of the Bronze Age Agean
Madeleine Kern

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About this Document

Weekly notes from October 26-30 going over the Minoan, Theran, and Mycenaean artifacts.
Hist Western Art I >1
Hurwit J
Class Notes
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This 11 page Class Notes was uploaded by Madeleine Kern on Sunday November 1, 2015. The Class Notes belongs to ARH 204 at University of Oregon taught by Hurwit J in Fall 2015. Since its upload, it has received 39 views. For similar materials see Hist Western Art I >1 in Art History at University of Oregon.

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Date Created: 11/01/15
11/1/15 4:29 PM Keftiu—people form the islands of the midst of great green sea (bringing tribute) Minoan civilization • Sir Arthur Evans 1880s o Knowledge of Homer’s description of Crete o The Minoan Thalassocracy o Local market—found stones with signs o Evans bought the Hill of Knossos for excavation § Under excavation: ú The Throne room • Held a chair with a high back ú Linear B tablets • Inscriptions engraved—the Bronze Age inhabitants of Crete were literate in a palatial civilization The Agean Bronze Age • Early Bronze Age • Middle Bronze Age • Late Bronze Age Cyladic Figurines, Early Bronze • Austere, highly stylized marble • Female characteristics • Generally small scale • A few exceptions—male figures • Traces of paint o Ancient sculpture is painted • Folded Arm Figurine, Early Bronze • Toes pointing downward: meant to be suspended • Found in graves, houses, sanctuaries • Precious objects acquired in life often taken to the graves • Created the same time as Egyptian sphinx; Agean civilization could not match monumentalization of older civilization of Egy pt/Sumer Haghia Tradha, Fresco of cat (detail) • Fresco from room 14 The Palace of Minos, Knossos • Social, economic, religious, industrial centers • Authority • Similarity—duplicate of palace layout = palatial canon o Organized around open -air rectangular court § Court is oriented on a North/South axis o The court is aligned with natural elements —across from a sacred mountain o The palace recognizes sacred nature of the landscape o Minoan Palace did not develop independently —a product of a single vision and common authority o Lack of fortifications: no need to worry about fighting (reconstruction of west side of central court) (throne room) Bull Jumping Fresco • 3 stages in the action of bull jumping • Two women and one man —the female’s skin color is light and the male’s is dark, keeping with the canon of depicting male and female Snake Goddess, Palace of Minos • Priestess or goddess (?) Gold Ring Isopata • Detailed women in dresses “Master Impression ,” Khania • Unknown person but provides evidence of a male figure in the poli tical world Youth (God?), Palaikstro, Late Bronze Age • Hands close to chest for reverence • Gold + Ivory —later reserved for gods The Art and Architecture of Bronze Age Thera (Santorini) Minoan art = small • Master “Impression,” from K • Boxer Rhyton, from Hag hia Triadha, Late Minoan I Minoans develop colorful lively style Late Minoan I • Associated with palace Floral Style, IA-B • Flowers, grasses, reeds, organic network Linear Style • Abstract forms to unify the vase • Kamares Ware Jar, from Knossos, Middle Minoan II Marine Style, Garnia, Late Minoan IB • Corals, seaweed, octopus (placed diagonally) • Not a realistic octopus, but a naturalistic representation of an octopus • Evoked natural world without representing it realistically • Floral + Marine style overlap chronologically o Marine styleàdestroyed by Mycenaean, palace of Minos controlled and taken over by Mycenaean palace IF Atlantis existed, then it existed in the Aegean Sea (Thera (Santorini)) • Most powerful volcanic eruptions, dramatic color cliffs were the int erior walls of the exposed rim of volcanic eruption • Thera before the Bronze Age —was one big mass encircled by caldera with single opening • Thera: the only active caldera in the Mediterranean Agents of catastrophe : • 1. Tsunami • 2. Earthquake • 3. Ash fall-out o People fled because island uninhabitable Spyridon Marinatos (Greek Archaeologist) • Site of Akrotiri: art and architecture well preserved by pumice/ash • West House of Triangle Square o Built of blocks of stone • The eruption created a time capsule Floral Style Jug, Akrotiri LC IA Frescoed Offering Table • Dolphins • *The Marine style has not seemed to advanced before the volcano blew Mochlos (island) • House CI: Late Minoan IA buried by Min oan ash o Rebuilt, covered, and rebuilt by ash The Art and Architecture of Br onze Thera (Santorini) • The eruption of Thera took place at Late Minoan IA and cannot be responsible for the destruction of Crete • There are no known human remains (evacuated?) “Spring Fresco,” Room Delta 2, Akrotiri, Thera • Originally painting v. Minoan wh ich was reconstructed to show paint • “Hallucinogenic” lilies • The color green is not in the color palette • Lilies in the process of opening up • Depicts celebration of nature at the beginning of Spring Thera Fresco—Thera • Children: distinguished by shaven head “Boxing Children” fresco, Akrotiri, Thera. Late Minoan IA West House, Akrotiri, Room 5 • “Young Priestess” • “Young Fisherman” o placed on walls and moving towards corner • North wall o Walking up a mountain, defense line (attack on a coastal town) • East wall o Nilotic landscape (showing the Nile Delta) winding streams & palms o Mythological world • South wall o Festival of ships—parade of vessels for opening of maritime season “Saffron gatherers”, Xeste 3, Akrotiri • Mansion built with massive stones • Adoration of Goddess atop Tripartite Shrine, Fresco, Xeste 3 o Blue monkey: sacred animal/ griffin: magical beast —both closely associated with goddess of nature o Serving/pouring saffron (expensive, decadent, useful for many things) Myth of Brilliant but doomed civilizat ion • Minoan culture + Theran eruption = Plato’s Atlantis (?) VIOLENCE + EMBLEM Heinrich Schliemann 1822 -1890 • Discovers “Priam” and used knowledge of Homer’s Iliad o Poor historical basis of mythology • 1874: Schliemann begins excavations at Mycenae o Lion Gate Grave Circle 4 • Grave Stele • Bull’s head • Cup of Nestor • Death masks Grave A shafts of Mycenae • Gold/silver Death mask of Agamemmon, Grave Circle A Rocked the foundations of a comfortable world • Center of culture and vast wealth lay behind Greek mytholo gies after all 11/1/15 4:29 PM 11/1/15 4:29 PM


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