Greek Art and Architecture

Essential Question

What was Greek art like? How does Greek art affect the modern day?

Greek Art and Architecture

Greek art is very diverse, with different styles emerging during different periods in history. During the Archaic period (around 700-480 BCE), the Greeks began to depict human figures in their art. However, these figures were still quite stiff and unrealistic. As time went on, the Greeks became more skilled at portraying human forms and emotions, and during the Classical period (480-323 BCE), they developed a more naturalistic style. Finally, during the Hellenistic period (323-31 BCE), they began to incorporate more drama and emotion into their art.

One of the most famous examples of Greek art is the Parthenon Frieze. This sculpture adorned the Parthenon, a temple dedicated to the goddess Athena in Athens, Greece. The sculpture depicts the Panathenaic procession, which was an important festival in ancient Athens. The figures are arranged in a very organized and symmetrical way, which was characteristic of Greek art.

Another famous example of Greek art is the Winged Victory of Samothrace. This statue, also known as Nike of Samothrace, depicts the goddess Nike (who was associated with victory). The statue is made of marble and is very dynamic and dramatic, with flowing drapery and outstretched wings.

Greek Architecture:

Greek architecture is characterized by its beauty, symmetry, and grandeur. The Greeks developed three main orders of architecture: the Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian orders. Each order has its own distinct style and was used for different types of buildings.

The Doric order is the oldest of the three orders and is characterized by its simplicity and solidity. The columns are very plain and do not have any decoration. The Parthenon is an example of a building that uses the Doric order.

The Ionic order is characterized by its more ornate design. The columns have a scroll-like decoration at the top called a volute. The Temple of Artemis in Ephesus, Turkey, is an example of a building that uses the Ionic order.

The Corinthian order is the most ornate of the three orders. The columns have elaborate floral decorations at the top, and the buildings that use this order are often very grand and impressive. The Temple of Olympian Zeus in Athens is an example of a building that uses the Corinthian order.

Influence on Western Art:

Greek art and architecture have had a profound influence on Western art. Greek art's emphasis on beauty and perfection has influenced Western art for centuries. Renaissance artists such as Michelangelo and Leonardo da Vinci were inspired by Greek art's idealized human form.

Greek architecture has also had a profound influence on Western architecture. The United States Capitol building and the White House in Washington, D.C., are both inspired by Greek architecture. The grandeur and symmetry of Greek architecture continue to inspire architects to this day.

In conclusion, Greek art and architecture have played a significant role in shaping the art and architecture of the Western world. Greek art's emphasis on beauty

Activity 3: How would you describe the art of Ancient Greece?

Using the information from this lesson, answer the questions in a thinking map. Complete this assignment digitally or on paper. It will be collected in your portfolio. 

Extension Activities