ARTH 324: From Alexander the Great to Cleopatra: The Hellenistic World

ARTH 324-001: Hellenistic Art from Alexander to the Caesars
(Spring 2020)

01:30 PM to 02:45 PM MW

Art & Design Building L008

Section Information for Spring 2020

This course will explore the final phase of Greek art, that of the Hellenistic period (ca. 331-31 BCE).  After the military campaigns of Alexander the Great of Macedon, Greek culture was spread throughout the Eastern Mediterranean and the Near East by his successors.  Hellenic civilization was profoundly changed by interactions with other cultures, changes marked by a sense of increased diversity and the importance of individualism.  These deep societal changes also had a strong impact on art produced in the fourth century BCE and beyond.  The resulting Hellenistic period of Greek art has been described as theatrical, intellectual, and emotionally vibrant: works of sculpture and painting seek to draw the viewer into a dramatically charged moment and evoke the sympathies and passions of the observer.  Architecture of the period relies on scale and ornament to overwhelm the senses.  From the beginnings of Hellenistic style under Alexander, to Cleopatra's Greco-Egyptian home in Alexandria, and beyond to lavish works created in this style under the Caesars of Rome, this course will examine the development of Hellenistic style, the major artists of the period, the variety of monuments and sculptural types that it produced as well as the interplay between Hellenistic culture and the art itself.  We will focus on sculpture, painting, and architecture, but also examine metalwork, mosaics, and other media that embody the style of the Hellenistic Age.


Course Information from the University Catalog

Credits: 3

Arts of the Hellenistic age within the context of history and culture of the period. Explores the powerful dynasties ruling wealthy empires; achievements in learning and literature housed in the Great Library at Alexandria; baroque sculpture adorning the Altar of Zeus at Pergamon; and Roman collectors of Greek art and antiques. Limited to three attempts.
Mason Core: Arts
Recommended Prerequisite: 24 credits.
Schedule Type: Lecture

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