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Museum of the Best

Only the finest pieces of art, be it from Mycenaean or the Renaissance era, make it in this museum.
by

AJ Gudmundsen

on 29 April 2010

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Transcript of Museum of the Best

Why do we create art? I submit:
For fun, boredom, and fame.
I can't say what each artist to be highlighted today would say ('cause they're dead of course) but whatever the reason, they produced some dang good work. Let's take a journey through... Mycenaen and Minoans Hellenic Hellenistic The Best
(in my opinion) These guys are epic; they predate Christ, they have a sick name for their civilization, and we can only assume their tools aren't that great. Yet they were able to create these pieces anyway? Epic. Well let's just take a look. Check out this parisian; no, not a Woman from Paris,
but a gorgeous lady. Nice. Unfortunately, No Artists are
known for this painting. The detail and color in this painting is again
quite astounding especially for the time.
For what I can only assume is our modern version of Bull Riding (a sport that actually quite terrifies me) this look surprisingly fun. Probably not the artist's intent, but alas, I am the critic right? Is it Zeus, or Poseidon? Why not both (Nah). Either way you look at it, this scultpure is amazing. The similarities between this sculpture and the art of the Hellenic era to follow are stark, mainly in the lack of emotion. Probably the most influential piece of this era. The Perfect: What would the best people look like? Buff (or at least "cut") and Perfect.
The Hellenic Era took this idea and put it into art form.
Personally, I disagree that "emotionless" faces are perfect, but you know, to each his own right? "Discobolus" - Myron
The Discus Thrower is the epitome of Perfect as he is both bulky in strength, but the the expression on his face is exactly how the hellenics would describe Perfect: without expression. The "S - Curve" that was so popular of the time is exemplified here. "Blonde Head"
Yeah... this guys is "perfect" as well. Although we can't see his body, I'm sure it was buff. More importantly, is his face: No emotion and a handsome man. They love it but is it truly perfect? That's up to you to decide. "Doryphoros" - Polykleitos
Perhaps my favorite of the Hellenic era, this guy deserves to be in here.
Sure, his face is still emotionless, but unlike the Discobolus whose face should
look like something else, this guys is probably just right. He's got that nice
contrapposto look that just says, "Yeah i'm standing here, what of it?" Excellent. If I had to choose one thing that the Hellenes gave to the world, it would be along the lines of what it DID NOT give to the world. Their sculptures and art featured subjects that showed little to no emotion; something the Hellenistic era would change. After the Hellenic Era's reign of emotionless art, the Hellenistic Era's motto was basically, "If you don't show emotion, you ARE NOT a person!" Agreed. If you disagree, you can leave the Museum (or i'll fight you). "The Laocoon Group" - The Rhodes Group
In what is now a monumental sculpture on display in the Vatican, this was one of the first to truly exemplify feelings and emotions, perhaps even to a slightly exagerated state. As Laocoon and his sons are carried away into the sea, each of their muscles are straining to fight the serpents and the degree of detail here is so incredible. Full emotion, fully what one would expect to feel like if we were to be grabbed by giant serpents and carried off; let's hope that never happens (just don't speak blasphemy, which happens to be the truth, and you'll be fine). What's the first thing you notice about this Bronze Bearded man? The correct answer, is that he's ugly. Ugly in comparison to how the Hellenic era renders their "beautiful" blonde guys for example. The point of the Hellenistic era is to show emotion in their most natural forms, even if it is an ugly man. "Market Woman"
Same thing as the old man - she's not the most attractive person on earth by any measure. But through the emotions on her face we are able to see deeper than just the bronze outer layer. We are able to at least understand to a certain degree that this woman is a normal woman who is not rich or famous. A characteristic that, without the help of written text, can only be achieved through showing us emotion. The Renaissance Takes Contrapposto, S-Curves, Emotion, No emotion; the whole nine yars and makes the best art ever. Today, these pieces of art are more well known then any other pieces.
The Masterpieces.
"La Pieta" - Michelangelo
Depicting what we can only imagine as the most painful experiences for anyone to ever endure, The Crucifixion of Jesus Christ. Like all art forms, it must convey a significant message with no words. In this masterpiece, it is not in the face of Mary that the emotion lies, but in the her obvious mourning by the way she holds her son. To imagine holding a loved and lost one in such a way as this can only evoke the most humble and respectful emotions.
"The Mona Lisa" - Leonardo Da Vinci
Come on... how can we talk about art and not talk about the Mona Lisa. Possibly the most famous painting in the world, the Mona Lisa is still the subject of much study, scrutiny, mythologizing, and parody.
Plain and simpleThe Mona Lisa revolutionized painting. The pose itself broke the previous traditions of portraiture in that they were full lenght. Leonardo introduced the waist-up, hands-folded-on-lap approach, which allowed for a much more intimate and detailed treatment. This pose was imitated immediately and became fashionable for portraiture by such painters are Raphael. The background is painted in a gradation of lights and colors, losing details in the distance, instead of the traditional approach in which foreground and background are equally distinct. Mona herself is rendered with extraordinary vividness that gives on-lookers a sense of viewing a living woman; something only achieved now by photography. One could talk forever about the aesthetics that make this painting so monumental, but in simple words Leonardo displayed in this work a mastery of technique that was unknown at the time. Mycenae, Hellenic, Hellenistic, Renaissance: All brought to the world something different, something unique. Each era would somehow impact its successor whether in something it exemplified well, or something it lacked. Either way, these periods of monumental creativity gave us The Best that the modern world can now show off.

Hope you enjoyed your stay, and come back and visit us again!
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