Ancient Mediterranean + Europe
- Polykleitos, Doryphoros (Spear Bearer)
- Polykleitos, Doryphoros (Spear-Bearer)
- Polykleitos, Doryphoros
- Myron, Discobolus (Discus Thrower), Roman copy of an ancient Greek bronze
- The Athenian Agora and the experiment in democracy
- Parthenon (Acropolis)
- The Parthenon
- Destruction, Memory, and Monuments: The Many Lives of the Parthenon
- Phidias, Parthenon sculptures (pediments, metopes and frieze)
- Who owns the Parthenon sculptures?
- Egyptian blue on the Parthenon sculptures
- "Plaque of the Ergastines" fragment from the frieze on the east side of the Parthenon
- The Erechtheion
- Caryatid and column from the Erechtheion
- Temple of Athena Nike on the Athenian Acropolis
- Victory (Nike) Adjusting Her Sandal, Temple of Athena Nike (Acropolis)
- Victory (Nike) Adjusting her Sandal
- Grave Stele of Hegeso
- Grave Stele of Hegeso
Myron, Discobolus (Discus Thrower), Roman copy of an ancient Greek bronze from c. 450 B.C.E., Classical Period (Palazzo Massimo alle Terme). Speakers: Dr. Beth Harris & Dr. Steven Zucker. Created by Beth Harris and Steven Zucker.
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- What is he leaning against? Is it an actual thing being represented, or is it just for support?(11 votes)
- How did art historians knew that these marbles were copies from Greek bronzes if most of the originals have been lost?(8 votes)
- From the author:We have some Greek bronzes and multiple marbles from Rome and of course both the Greeks and the Romans wrote about their art.(25 votes)
- If we study Roman copies to understand the Ancient Greeks, is it also how we study the Romans? Or do Romans have their own original styles in addition to their love for the Greek style?(6 votes)
- The Romans produced their own art that was not copies, but it was all based on that of the Greeks. However, they adapted it--they were a different culture who saw the world differently(7 votes)
- Why has depiction of an idealized, or perfect human form become passe in art?
Look at sculpture on a college campus, and mostly (except for the mandatory statue of the founders) non-representational.
Why has the presentation of nobility in art become an object of historical interest? If an artist today tries to present what is best in people in representational sculpture, they will be treated with contempt.(0 votes)
- I think art is part of the period the artist lives in, and it can not remain the same throughout the generations. If a great culture already developed one idea to the max, there is no need or will to recreate the same idea over and over again. Perhaps the idea of nobility is no longer relevant to the feelings of artists today, because it is no longer a great part of society, and they prefer to work on subjects that our more close to today's life. Also, sometimes an idea in art, such as nudity, remains but changes its meaning. Nudity for greeks is not the same as nudity to people in the middle ages, or the 19th century or today. So the representation remains but the idea behind it is the reflection of the society of the period.(7 votes)
- honestly, at2:06, i thought that it looked strained because it seems to me that he would be trying to throw this heavy bronze discus really far, because it was a sport in the ancient Olympics (the first ones in Greece) . So, wouldn't they be trying to win?(1 vote)
- It may just be the lighting in this image, but the statue's face is actually more calm than one might expect, meaning there isn't a grimace or even furrowed brows of concentration. It isn't that these athletes did not want to win, most likely they definitely looked more strained throwing a discus, but the statue is not trying to convey that pose, but rather, an idealized one, where athleticism is of no effort. It is a young, healthy, fit body with no strain.(4 votes)
- What is the sculpture at2:23called?(1 vote)
- How similar are the copies to the originals? Did the Romans attempt to replicate the statue as diligently as possible, or did they change aspects of it to better suit their tastes?(1 vote)
- Copies range in quality - some are first-rate, others of lesser quality. Possessing copies - of sculpture, of painting - was an important way for elite Romans to communicate their wealth and socio-economic status. Take the Villa of the Papyri at Herculaneum - its garden was decorated with a carefully chosen set of portrait busts - copies of Greek originals - that were curated by the owner to make a statement about himself and his erudition. You can see the portraits here: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Category:Ancient_Roman_bronze_busts_from_the_Villa_of_the_Papyri_(Herculaneum)(3 votes)
- Was the Discus Thrower on display by himself, part of a group of statues (ie: javelin, wrestling), or nobody has any idea?(1 vote)
- At2:36, I can see two symmetrical protusions in the figure's hair. What do they mean? Is there any relationship with the horns in Michelangelo's Moses?(1 vote)
- Did the original bronze sculpture need a support? If so, did it look anything like the support for the marble copy?(1 vote)
- That’s a good question. I don’t know the answer, but in the video on the Charioteer of Delphi, they said that the tensile strength of bronze was enough to support free-standing limbs. It seems possible that the bronze statue of Discobolus would not have needed a support.(1 vote)
[MUSIC PLAYING] SPEAKER 1: Ancient Greek sculptures, bronze or marble, are frozen. But that doesn't mean that the ancient Greeks didn't want to convey movement. SPEAKER 2: In this case, movement that you couldn't even see with the naked eye. SPEAKER 1: What we're looking at, is a sculpture by an artist whose name is Myron. We've lost his original, but we have a later Roman marble copy of the "Discus Thrower." SPEAKER 2: The original was in bronze from the fifth century BCE. SPEAKER 1: About 450, 460. SPEAKER 2: And what we're looking at is one of many Roman copies. In fact, there's one next to the other in this museum, a testament to how popular these were among the Romans. SPEAKER 1: The sculpture shows a man who is at that moment where his body is fully wound. Look at the way that his right leg is bearing the weight of his body. His left leg, the toes are bent under, dragging slightly, and he's about to throw that discus. This is a moment of tremendous tension, but it's also this moment stasis, of stillness, right before the action. SPEAKER 2: Athletes and art historians have debated whether this is even an actual pose that the discus thrower takes in the process. SPEAKER 1: It's so interesting, because when we think back about the history of the Greek figure, we think first of the Archaic Kouros, who is so stiff and so stylized. And then we have the tremendous breakthroughs of people like Polykleitos who developed an understanding of the body, and showed in a contrapposto. But here we have something that's so dynamic, and so complex, I mean just look at the arc of the shoulders and the arms, and the way that they reverse the arc of the twist of the hips. SPEAKER 2: That is the overriding concern of Myron, the sculptor, to capture the aesthetic qualities here. The sense of balance and harmony, and the beauty in the proportions of the body. SPEAKER 1: There is kind of anti-realism here, for all of its careful naturalism. There is no real strain within the body. It is absolutely at rest, and ideal, even in this extreme pose. SPEAKER 2: If you think about a figure from much later, but in a similar pose of movement, of athletic energy, like Bernini's "David." SPEAKER 1: Well, that's got all this torsion, absolutely. SPEAKER 2: That figure expresses all of the physical power in the face. He's clenching his teeth, right? SPEAKER 1: That's true. And his brow is really knit forward. But here, the face is absolutely serene. And it reminds me of the consistency with which the Greeks always maintain their nobility, even in battle, even in terrible situations with monsters. And here, even at this moment when he's about to release the discus. SPEAKER 2: Right, that nobility, that calm in the face, is a sign of a nobility of the human being. SPEAKER 1: Well, this is a sport, and the man is naked, which is what the Greeks did. But there was a real logic there. Why would you cover up the beauty of the body in sport, which is, of course, a celebration of what the human body can achieve. This is really a way to remind ourselves of the Greeks concern with the potential of humanity, the potential of the mind, and the potential of the body. SPEAKER 2: Taking that extra step to become even more ideal, more heroic, more noble, than even the finest athlete. SPEAKER 1: It is a perfect form. [MUSIC PLAYING]