My name is Kristina Danielle Lundgren. I am entrusting you to write the perfect paper, so thank you in advance.
I need a term paper with 3 ( or more,? ) citations, as well as 3 pages that I can revise to five.
I have ** the organized sections, and you can contact me at email@example.com if you have any questions.
Thank you for your every consideration.
Title: Uses of the Past
This is the physical description of the art piece involved with my assignment:
Culture European; French
Title Column Figure of a Nimbed King
Work Type: Sculpture
Date ca. 1150-1170
Measurements: H. 45 1/4 in. (115 cm)
---->THIS CAN BE VIEWED AT: http://images.google.com/imgres?imgurl=http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/images/h2/h2_20.157.jpg&imgrefurl=http://www.metmuseum.org/TOAH/ho/07/euwf/ho_20.157.htm&usg=__dFrtLGp00hQiSZZjwXklNITMxk0=&h=707&w=300&sz=55&hl=en&start=1&um=1&tbnid=KXJ9MTiHqzbG8M:&tbnh=140&tbnw=59&prev=/images%3Fq%3DColumn%2BFigure%2Bof%2Ba%2BNimbed%2BKing%26um%3D1%26hl%3Den%26client%3Dfirefox-a%26rls%3Dorg.mozilla:en-US:official%26sa%3DN
The royal abbey of Saint-Denis, now a suburb of Paris, housed the shrine of the national saint, possessed many of the regalia of the kings of France, and served as their burial site. Under the energetic Abbot Suger (1122-1151), the early abbey was rebuilt in a new style hailed in the Middle Ages as "the French style" and subsequently called Gothic. This column figure of an Old Testament king is the only complete statue to survive from the now destroyed cloister, originally constructed shortly after the death of Abbot Suger. A new pictorial approach to sculpture is evident in this carving: the standing figure is integral to the cylindrical column. The bejeweled crown and nimbus distinguish the royal and saintly nature of the figure. His identity may once have been inscribed upon the scroll that he holds, now broken.
The (fictional) Northern Utah Art Institute has received an exceptional grant to fund the borrowing of important works of art from other major museum collections for the purposes of an exhibition entitled Uses of the Past: the Legacy of Athens. This blockbuster show takes as its theme the multiplicity of ways in which later antique and medieval artists and their audiences made use of the Classical
style and Classical
iconography. The show is to be organized into three thematically-organized galleries: one dedicated to “Politics and the Past” the second to “Heroes and Saints” and the third to “Beauty and the Eye of the Beholder.” Your job, as an assistant curator, is to decide which gallery your assigned work fits into, and to write an essay of 5-7 pages for the catalog. Because this will be the first time many Utahns get to experience such works first-hand, you’ll need to provide context for them, both by comparing the featured works to more famous examples (such as those found in the textbook), and by providing some historical background. However, your primary job is to propose a “reading” of the object in light of the theme.
To build on formal-analysis skills in crafting a short, interpretive essay similar to those written by the curators of museum exhibitions for publications in accompanying catalogs. The essay should include
• Clear identification of the work, including its provenance (so far as it is known), dimensions, and current ownership
• A thesis that explains the work’s historical significance and its relationship to the exhibition’s theme (see below)
• A tightly-focused discussion of the work in relation to its historical period
• Conclusions that build on the thesis and the foregoing discussion.
• Illustration of comparanda, when appropriate.
• Look up the work on which you are assigned to write in ARTstor – the works are assigned by last name.
• Read the sample catalog entry, and the “Instructor’s commentary” for your image.
• Review the historical context for your work in Gardner’s, looking for appropriate comparative images (comparanda). You can also use reputable websites, such as the Metropolitan Museum’s, to find comparanda.
• Study your work and take notes suitable for a formal analysis
• Decide which gallery the work belongs in (there are no “right” answers – the correctness depends on your justification of your choice in your essay).
• You do NOT need to illustrate your work in the paper, as I have done in the sample essay. This was done just for convenience to you.
• Please follow the paper guidelines outlined in the “Sample Paper Format” handout:
• If referring to a comparison work illustrated in the textbook, simply give the figure number in the textbook (e.g. Gardner fig. 2.8). If you would like to compare your work to another work NOT featured in the text, you should attach a b/w copy of that work at the end of the paper (not included in the page count), and reference it in the text as “fig. x” (x being a number, such as 1, 3, 79 (heaven forbid), not literally “x”)
• Make sure you begin the essay with the “vital statistics” of the work (title, date, artist, etc., as in the sample essay)
• If you use information from a source other than your own head, you MUST PROVIDE CITATION or you will be guilty of PLAGIARISM. Since correct citation is kind of a bother, I’d advise you to work from your own knowledge base. Notice that in the sample essay, most of the historical context I give is of the “common knowledge” variety: the one exception is in the paragraph about the athlete, where I’ve cited my source. You have to be VERY CAREFUL about what sources you use. Most free-access websites are not reliable or scholarly enough to be cited in an academic paper. Thus the Greek Tourism Board’s site is OUT. Museum websites (provided they are real, brick-and-mortar museums) are okay. But I prefer that you use what are called “peer-reviewed” sources, such as the Oxford Dictionary of Art (it’s online, available through our library), journal articles, and books published by university or museum presses.
• A THESIS IS ABSOLUTELY INDISPENSIBLE
PLEASE, NOTEInformation researched and given by the professor, is from www.artstor.org
This is an example paper given by the professor to which was A graded quality according to her standers:
Uses of the Past: The Legacy of Athens Gallery 1 Politics and the Past
Head of an athlete
Hellenistic or Roman
Probably a copy after Lysippos (Greek, ca. 365-310 BCE)
Height: 29.9 cm.
The Kimbell Art Museum
Fort Worth, Texas
This exceptionally well preserved bronze probably originally belonged to a full-length figure, and from similarities in the expression of the face and the hairstyle, the comparison can be made to the Apoxyomenos of Lysippos, one of the leading sculptors of late classical
Greece. The importance of such an object of this is at least two-fold. First, it reminds us that well into the Roman period
, signal Greek works of the fifth and fourth centuries continued to set the artistic standards to which craftsman both aspired and responded. Second, it can serve as an indication of the lost visual environment of Hellenized antiquity; its medium, style, and subject matter all point towards an environment in which the ideal and the natural competed for dominance.
Hellenistic culture knew of the great works of the Classical
Greek past both directly, through surviving works, and indirectly through legends, literary accounts, and copies. This head belonged to one such copy. Comparing it to known copies of Lysippos’ Apoxyomenos, such as the Roman marble (textbook figure no.), or the recently-excavated bronze from off the Croatian coast (now in Zagreb, fig. 1), the most obvious similarity is in the hairstyle, with its coarsely-textured chunks of stylized, sweaty hair pushed forward toward the temples. The facial expression of the Kimbell head is also similar to these two examples: the downward tilt of the chin, the sharp delineation of the eyebrow ridge, the slightly aquiline nose, and above all the downward curve at the outer edges of the remarkably full lips. The formal resemblance between the two identified works and this head argue convincingly that it belonged to yet another copy of Lysippos’ famous work.
Why would a Roman or Hellenistic patron want a copy, rather than a unique work? The fame of the original and its maker endowed the copies with a certain value that was probably similar to the value that we place today on good quality copies of works by such well-known figures as Rembrandt or Picasso. But there was more to it than that. Lysippos, in particular, was known as the court-sculptor of Alexander the Great. Alexander was one of the central models for power and prestige in the antique world. Rulers of every sort often used art to associate themselves with Alexander’s legacy; Alexander’s profile appeared on Hellenistic coins, and even Roman emperors sometimes styled themselves after this legendary hero. To own a work associated, through its artist, with Alexander, would have been a mark of prestige. It would have shown the patron’s wealth and taste, but also the patron’s more abstract connection to this
great man. A work like this could be featured in a wealthy person’s private residence, or in a public place where it would remind passers-by of its patron’s importance.
In addition to serving the patron’s prestige through its association with Lysippos (and through Lysippos, Alexander), a work such as this spoke to a specific set of cultural values. One of the most basic ways it accomplishes this is through the medium used. Lost-wax cast bronze works, such as this, were the most portable form of full-size copies available. Stone copies were much heavier, and more liable to break. The fact that many bronze works have been found in ancient shipwrecks suggests that these works were exported from Greece to locations around the Mediterranean. Bronze was not just a convenient material, however. It was expensive, and required specialized labor to produce, so that made it additionally valuable and more significant of its owner’s high status. Furthermore, it was the original material in which the great Classical
sculptors are thought to have worked, so owning a work in bronze probably allowed the patron to project an image of having some connection to the glorious past, when Greek heroes defeated the Persians, or when Alexander dominated the world. Putting a bronze copy of a statue by Lysippos in the room where he received his guests, a powerful man could be advertising his Hellenized identity and reminding visitors of his credentials.
If this is true of the medium, it is doubly true of the style of the work. Although Hellenistic artists often experimented with the visual formulae developed by their Classical
predecessors, often to very dramatic effect, this work is very conservative. The calm, almost emotionless cast of the face has much in common with the cool remove of the Classical period
, visible in such works as Polykleitos’ Doryphoros, or the woman depicted on the grave stele of Hegeso. Its faithfulness to its
model rejects novelties such as the leering, toothless grin of the Drunken Old Woman, or the fierce agony in the drawn features of the Dying Gaul, even though these works may actually be closer to it in time. Choosing a work with this noticeably conservative, unemotional style, may have been a statement on the part of the patron. It aligns itself with the dignity and self-control associated with the Classical
ideal of manhood, and rejects the more emotive, and perhaps more “feminine” qualities associated with Hellenistic expressionism. Even the tension between the smoothly modeled facial features and the roughly-cut, stylized hair seems to draw attention to the work as a “made” object, something ideal and perfected, lifted out of the world of ordinary emotions and experiences.
The third element of the sculpture that has important ideological content is its subject matter. While Hellenistic sculpture vastly expanded the array of subjects considered suitable for representation, this work, as a copy, returns to one of the much more limited array of stock figures from the Classical period
. The athlete was the embodiment of the male ideal in Classical
culture: he was virile, youthful, and competent, possessing extraordinary physical abilities and able to fully command himself.1 The Apoxyomenos represents just such an athlete. As his beardless, unwrinkled face denotes, he is young. The curl to his lips suggests haughtiness, but given his state of perfection, it is probably warranted. In the surviving copies, his nude body draws attention to itself through a gesture of hygiene: he scrapes the sweat and dirt from his arm or leg with a strygil, reminding the viewer, rather forcefully, of his physicality as well as his beauty. Having such a statue on display would almost certainly alert viewers to its patron’s or
1 On the athlete as the male ideal of the “embodied polis”, see Andrew Stewart, Art, Desire, and the Body in Ancient Greece (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1996), 133-155.
owner’s affinity not only for antiquities, but for the cultural values of the “good old days” when men were really men. The heroic body of the athlete and his eternally youthful face might even have served as a kind of rebuke or reminder to viewers. If one could only strive after such perfection, maybe one could recapture the heroism and glory of Alexander and the Greeks of bygone days.
Objects like this bronze head at first might seem generic reminders of the “look and feel” of Classical
Antiquity, but when examined in relationship to other objects produced in the period
between the decline of Greek power after Alexander, and the rise of Roman dominance in the second century BCE, they come to life. The distinct iconographical, material and stylistic choices made by patrons and artists offer a glimpse of how works of art helped individuals and groups project their ideological affinities into the visible world. In the Hellenistic period
, and on into the Roman period
, works of art used the past as a language for articulating political and personal messages. This head, with its strong affinity for a pure, Classical
ideal, suggests a patron whose prestige and power were founded on a conservative, traditionalist outlook that probably dismissed newer stylistic and iconographic conventions as somewhat frivolous and unmanly.
fig. 1 After Lysippos, Apoxyomenos (detail), Zagreb, Croatia. Image from Wikimedia Commons.
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