As man evolved over centuries, his views of art also transformed. Each culture and era presents very distinct characteristics of their art. Through time and experimentation, the views of mankind clearly are seen with art. We must understand how art was used in the past, to know why we need it today.
Egyptians were the first people to make a large impact on the world of art. Egyptians needed art for their religious beliefs more than decoration or self-gratification. The most important aspect of Egyptian life is the ka, the part of the human spirit that lives on after death. The ka needed a physical place to occupy or it would disappear. “The double that lingered on in the tomb inhabiting the body or even statues of the deceases, but was also independent of man and could move, eat and drink at will.”Most of the important men of Egypt paid to have their body carved out of stone. That was where the spirit would live after the man dies. They used stone because it was the strongest material they could find. Longevity was very important. The bodies are always idealized and clothed. Figures are very rigid, close-fisted, and are built on a vertical axis to show that the person is grand or intimidating. Most of the figures were seen in the same: profile of the legs, frontal view of the torso, and profile of the head. “The style is called frontalism. In reliefs or paintings, frontailsm means that the head of the character is always drawn in profile, while the body is seen from the front.”Like most civilizations, Egyptians put a lot of faith in gods. The sky god Horus, a bird, is found in a great amount of Egyptian art. Little recognition was ever given to the artists. The emphasis was on the patron.
Early Greek art was greatly influenced by the Egyptians. Geography permitted both cultures to exchange their talents. The beginning of Greek art is marked by the Geo-metric phase. The most common art during the Geo-metr…