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Problems and features of temple sculpture - The Greeks built temples for display. They were meant to impress and provide great beauty for all to see.

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Introduction

Problems and features of temple sculpture The Greeks built temples for display. They were meant to impress and provide great beauty for all to see. When artists were employed to sculpt features on temples there were several problems that they had to take into consideration, friezes, metopes and pediments. One of the first problems the artists confronted were metopes. These were placed just inside the entrance. The reason for metopes being difficult for artists to make were their rectangular shape and only one caption could be used and would have to be instantly recognisable to the observer. The figures would also have to be in the right proportions. The Herakles and the Kerkopes metope from Temple C at Selinus is a quite successful example of a metope. ...read more.

Middle

However the figures are not particularly lifelike which spoils the effect of the metope, if they were more realistic this would enhance the image. Friezes were another problem for artists they ran along the outside of the temples and were a predominant feature, but were also difficult to design successfully. The difficulties with friezes were that they were long and narrow, therefore fitting the characters in and in the correct proportions was hard. Again, a scene would have to be identifiable instantly. The frieze of Siphnian Treasury, portraying the Battle of gods and giants is what I think to be an excellent example of a frieze. As the frieze was made out of marble finer detail could be added, this was good because the more detail the greater the realism. ...read more.

Conclusion

The problems that the artists faced with the pediments were there unusual shape, triangular. Also, a scene had to be fitted in the correct proportion, have a consistent scale and be identifiable. In the west pediment of the Temple of Aphaia at Aegin the artist has cleverly shown The Greeks fighting the Trojans. This scene is in mid action with Athene standing domineeringly in the centre of the pediment. This symbolises the power of the gods, watching over the struggle. As the area slopes down to the corners the artist has got the men kneeling, falling down and dying filling the space. I think this pediment shows an amazing battle scene and is very interesting. Generally I feel that the artists of temple sculpture managed to overcome these problems and made beautiful and very attractive historical pieces of art. Cecily Wearne US1Y ...read more.

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