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Movements, Styles, and Tendencies Classical Greek and Roman Art and Architecture

Classical Greek and Roman Art and Architecture

Classical Greek and Roman Art and Architecture Collage

Started: 8th Century BCE

Ended: 393 CE

"I found Rome a city of bricks and left it a city of marble."


Classical Art encompasses the cultures of Greece and Rome and endures as the cornerstone of Western civilization. Including innovations in painting, sculpture, decorative arts, and architecture, Classical Art pursued ideals of beauty, harmony, and proportion, even as those ideals shifted and changed over the centuries. While often employed in propagandistic ways, the human figure and the human experience of space and their relationship with the gods were central to Classical Art.

Over the span of almost 1200 years, ideals of human beauty and proportion occupied art's subject. Variations of those ideals were later adopted during the Renaissance in Italy and again during the 18th and 19th century Neoclassical trend throughout Europe. Connotations of moral virtue and stability clung to Classical Art, making it attractive to new nations and republics trying to find an aesthetic vocabulary to convey their power, while, later, in the 20th century it came under attack by modern artists who sought to disrupt and overturn power and traditional ideals.

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