Links for Exam II Art History I
Here's another piece that doesn't appear in your Stokstad text due to problems of provenance. This is the "Getty Kouros," an important (and very expensive...maybe $9 million) 1983 purchase of the Getty Museum in Mailbu, California. But, as even the Getty now acknowledges on its website, it may be a 20th century forgery. Its doubters have long noted that it seems to be an odd pastiche of styles from throughout the 6th century BCE and that the letter of authenticity that accompanied it in 1983 has been dismissed as a forgery.
This is a very good site for a general overview of the very famous Parthenon on the Athenian Acropolis, complete with sections on the sculptural decoration and on the three orders of ancient Greek architecture, plus other nice tidbits and links.
This story ("The Perils of Losing Your Marbles") from the BBC discusses what the return of the marbles might mean for the future of the British Museum and similar institutions.
Here's a Greek site that urges for the return of the marbles to Athens, parthenon2004.com. All they ask is that the British Museum make a commitment to returning the marbles sometime soon, not necessarily before the start of the Olympics (which didn't happen anyway), but in the future when the new and much larger Acropolis Museum is opened at the base of the Acropolis (seen here).
This is yet another site dedicated to the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. In this case, you can click on an interactive map to take you to each site, Of course, in the resiliency contest, it's still the Great Pyramid 1, All Others 0.
Here's a look at the new and controversial purchase by the Cleveland Museum of Art, the Lizard Slayer or Apollo Sauroktonos. The museum believes that it is likely to be an original bronze by none other than Praxiteles, if so making it the only surviving piece from his workshop [illustrations 5-59 and 5-60 are Roman copies, as Stokstad notes]. This is a pretty well-known piece by Praxiteles and appears in many Roman copies, complete with the tree and lizard (see example). The controversy here is that the piece does not have adequate provenance according to some critics, who fear that it may be a recent forgery. The museum's defense of their purchase can be found on this special page with many more pictures. There will be a symposium in Cleveland in April of 2006, although its findings probably won't fully satisfy everyone involved.
We didn't get around to discussing this, but the greatest library of the ancient world--and maybe the greatest library ever--was the Hellenistic era library in Alexandria, Egypt (see page 169). It is long since gone; a great fire destroyed its priceless collection if scrolls and papyri eons ago. But, it's now back...kind of. Here's the official site of the new $200 million library. Understandably, a lot of money was spent on a fire prevention system, but, eerily, it only took five months for this one to catch on fire, too, although the damage was limited to some administrative offices.
Also, the nature of what this modern collection of writing should be like has been discussed for several years now, especially since Saddam Hussein (not a First Amendment type of guy, of course) was one of the first to give large amounts of money for its construction, and Salmon Rushdie's works aren't likely to be included soon, as this story discusses.
As can be seen in this detail from the Sistine Chapel ceiling, Michelangelo was famously influenced by the Hellenistic Greek Laoco÷n statue [5-77] and he was even there in person when it was unearthed in Rome in 1506, but, a new (and not widely accepted) theory claims that Michelangelo actually forged the statue himself and then buried it. Maybe he was there because culprits like to return to the scene of the crime? For more on this controversy, check out this site.
The Tombaroli (tomb robbers) are as great a problem in Italy today as they've ever been. Here's a story on the ongoing battles between the Italian government and these lawless folks. Euphronios's Death of Sarpedon krater [5-28] is discussed as likely being an example of loot taken from an Etruscan tomb. When it's mentioned, see if you can spot the glaring error that's made! E-mail me if you think you've found it.
A new way to make an arch. For more on this effort, click here.
Pompeiian Forum Project - Here's a fine example of funds from the National Endowment for the Humanities going to a worthy cause. Although it's mostly filled with technical details beyond the scope of our course, see how the University of Virginia is using their endowment to learn more about this important and unique site. There are some cool VRML effects within, too.
Roman House - This page has a useful interactive floor plan of a typical Roman domus. Click on a room and a description of it appears along with example images.
Here are a few more examples of ephemeral writings (a.k.a. graffiti) from Pompeii. This site also offers some authentic Pompeian recipies at the end of the page.
Although, of course, they need to be spending as much money as possible in preserving their site as much as possible, it seems that some day soon, visitors at Pompeii will be able to wear backpacks and goggles with special virtual-reality capabilities so that when they stroll about the city, they can see it digitally recreated. I'm not sure about this, as you can trip easily enough on the cobblestones throughout the site even when you can look down and see what's there.
"Was he afriad? It seems not...." Here's a link to a letter by Pliny the Younger that describes the death of his famous and curious-to-the-end uncle, Pliny the Elder, during the eruption of Mt. Vesuvius on August 24, 79. Note that Pliny the Younger's decision to stay at home and study wound up saving his life...make of that what you will.
Mt. Vesuvius - Here's all the technical data and history one could imagine regarding this tremendous and still quite dangerous volcano that brought Pompeii's life to a screeching halt over 1900 years ago. And apparently people haven't learned from the past. As this recent story makes clear, far too many people still live on the slopes of Mt. Vesuvius, and it will erupt again one day...in fact, it's already overdue to do so.
Roman Art and Architecture - This is a nice little Roman image databank, provided by the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs. Although you may find this a little slow to load, you can find many images via either a chronological breakdown or sorted by medium (architecture / sculpture / painting). No matter how you use it, this site should be helpful in the recognition and application of the many terms we are currently considering. And there's the titanic Perseus Project, Tufts University's wonderful databank of the ancient world.
Here's a nice site that gives you a walk-through of Tiberius' sumptuous Villa Jovis on the awe-inspiring Island of Capri.
Nero's tremendous Domus Aurea ("Golden House") in the heart of Rome is now open to visitors once again. Read more about it at this official site. Unfortunately, less than two years after it was reopened, more damage to it occurred during the spring of 2001.
Quandiu stabit coliseus, stabit et Roma;
Quando cadit coliseus, cadet et Roma
Quando cadet Roma, cadet et mundus.
[While stands the Colosseum, Rome shall stand;
When falls the Colosseum, Rome shall fall
When Rome falls the world shall fall.]
-Bede, 8th century (listen to it here)
Nova's great "Secrets of Lost Empires" series included an episode in 1997 that tried to figure out exactly how the ancient Romans configured and manipulated the giant moveable canopy for the Colosseum in Rome. The most substantial information within this site is in the "Questions and Answers" section.
This new story reminds you of two important things. (1) There was an important Roman presence in Scotland by the late first century CE, and (2) Real rabbits in Scotland today almost as damaging as the "Evil Rabbit" seen in Monty Python's Holy Grail.
Microsoft's Rise of Rome -There are several questionable statements made about the Romans in this page put together by Microsoft to advertise their Roman-based game...see if you can find them.
Here's another Nova "Secrets of Lost Empires" page of relevance, this time their Roman Bath site, where you get lots of fun facts and images to help you appreciate what a day at the baths was like for a plebian Roman. Go to the "A Day at the Baths" options for these details, although there's a lot of other stuff beyond that, including a discussion of Roman Recipes, where you can learn how to make your own tasty Lucanian Sausage.