First of all, one should state that art represents the source of knowledge about the country and the culture of its nation. The cultural artifacts serve as the study means of the art history as well as of the techniques used by the artists in the past.
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The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston exhibits a unique collection of the Ancient Greek art objects, which is interesting from both the artistic and the historical points of view. The aim of this essay is to characterize the theme of the exhibition and to describe the exhibited art objects.
The Purpose And Theme Of The Exhibition
The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston is one of the largest art museums in the world. It is famous for its collections of the ancient art objects. The collection, which is the subject of the current research, is presented with the purpose of familiarization of the public with the culture of Ancient Greece. It encompasses such periods as the Neolithic age, the Bronze period, and later centuries in the history of Ancient Greece.
Here, one could observe the ceramics found in Southern Italy, which was inhibited by Greeks at that time. It also includes the statuettes, statues, and reliefs created by ancient artists. Besides, it is possible to view the household goods, which are interesting for the investigation of the lifestyle, cuisine, and even the taste preferences of people living within that timeframe.
These objects are also attractive for the study of ancient art as they are decorated with the traditional Greek paintings depicting the scenes from the Greek myths. The development of different art kinds in antique Greece reflects its long period of prosperity.
The Description Of The Collection
The Statute of Athena Parthenos
Athena Parthenos was the goddess of war in Ancient Greece. The Greeks also considered her as the patroness of military art and strategy. They believed that Athena Parthenos protected science, art, knowledge, and ingenuity. She took a very important place in Ancient Greek beliefs and myths.
It is not surprising that the capital of modern Greece bears the name of the goddess. This name reflects the thousandth history of the country. The Ancient Greeks believed that Athena was the creator of their state. Also, she ruled the family relationships and social well-being.
The art object exhibited by MFA represents the marble statute of 154 cm in height. The weight is 232.7 kg. This piece of art is dated to the 2nd or 3rd century AD. The figure of the goddess is placed on the stone sized 69.9 x 55.9 x 51.4 cm. One can see a lot of decorations covering the head of the goddess and the upper part of her body.
She has a long curly hair hanging over the shoulders, though does not have the hands. The decorations seem like the snakes rising to her neck. The goddess wears the traditional Greek dress touching the floor. Besides, one could notice her feet coming into view from the bottom of the cloth.
The Water Jar
Another object to be discussed is the water jar, sometimes called the hydria. It is a beautiful ceramic vessel depicting the scene from the Ancient Greek myth, in particular, the duel of the myth heroes about the fall of Troy. No doubt, the museum visitors could notice the chariot of Achilles and the body of the killed Hektor. According to the myth, Achilles tied the corpse of Hektor to his chariot and rode the horses across the field.
The vessel is dated to 520-510 BC. It is 50 cm high and has 26.1 cm in diameter. The main colors prevailing on the ceramics are terracotta and black together with the white and beige touching. The traditional Greek ornament frames the picture displaying the legendary scene.
Head of Zeus
The head of Zeus is one more sculptural object from the museum collection. Undoubtedly, it takes an important place among other artifacts because it represents the traditions of the antique Greek sculpture as well as the religious beliefs of the ancient people. Zeus took the highest position in the hierarchy of gods in Ancient Greece and was considered to be the god of thunder and lightning.
Interestingly, the Ancient Greeks believed that he determined the destiny of people and ruled the good and evil. If one takes a look at the sculpture, they can see that he is represented as an old man with long curly hair and beard. His regular features seem to not reflect the Greek type of face. This artifact made of marble is dated to 350-340BC. The size of the object is 48 cm in height and 26 cm in length.
The Ancient Earring
One should observe such an art piece as the ancient earring. With its beauty, this golden jewelry represents the craftsmanship of the Ancient Greek masters. The artifact is dated to 350-325 BC. It is rather heavy with the weight of almost 15.8 gm and 5 cm in height. The earring symbolizes Nike, the goddess of victory, who rides the chariot with two horses in it.
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The eyes expressions of the horses deserve special attention as the ancient master managed to reflect their zeal and energy in such a small object as the earring. One can also notice the muscles and other detailed traits of the horses’ bodies.
By the traditions, Nika is depicted on the run. She has long wings and a big palm leaf on her head. These elements express success and a happy end. The parts of these elements are covered with enamel. It should be noted that ancient jewelry was not only used as the means of decorating the body of people but also as the symbols of social status.
To sum up, the information mentioned above, it should be said that the collection of Greek art exhibited in the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston represents a great range of different cultural and historic artifacts. The statutes, ceramic vessels, jewelry, and other objects are displayed to the board public. Notably, many of them picture the religious beliefs of the Ancient Greeks.
The vessels and cups depict the scenes from the antique myths. It is possible to conclude that the exhibition is interesting and useful to obtain additional knowledge of antique art as well as the history of that period. It is highly recommended to visit the exhibition as it provides an opportunity to see the objects with the thousandth history.