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Brief Review of the 3 Evolutionary Styles of Greek Sculpture

Updated on September 29, 2014
Greek statue from the Archaic time period.
Greek statue from the Archaic time period.
Greek statue from the Classical timer period.
Greek statue from the Classical timer period.
Greek statue from the Hellenistic time period.
Greek statue from the Hellenistic time period.

In my research of Greek sculptures, I have learned that there are 3 evolutionary styles of Greek sculptures, Archaic, Classical and Hellenistic (Swartz, 2007). What is unique about the Archaic statutes (600 BC-480 AD) is their stance. Both the Kouros (male) and Kore (female) statues dominated the Archaic period (Peters, 2006). They are formed more rigid probably because this was the easiest way to form art (Smith, 2009). reason could be because of their equal weight on both feet or because their chisels were not that proficient. It was also believed that the Egyptian art influenced this period, with its rigid poses (Phillips, 2002). If they don’t have the pose of a dead human, their left foot is usually extended forward.. Also, their expression on their face is of none, they are usually staring straight ahead. The reason why is it was thought that suppressing ones emotions was noble and every man should goal for.


During the Classical period things changed up a it. Instead of not being too anatomically accurate they began to become more precise (Peters, 2006). It is also evident that sculptures were obsessed with proportions, aiming for the most accurate (Smith, 2009). They also started to incorporate mathematical formulas in their art. Now that they were understand more of anatomy and what bones support what, they incorporated that into their art. Females were eventually depicted nude but later on they were slightly covered by a robe (Swartz, 2007). With the robe, this helped depicted motion.

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During the Hellenistic (400-150 BC) period the statutes were more believable. In case anyone was wondering the work Hellene was the Greek word for “the Greeks”. They are in an action stance and they portray a very realistic look upon their face (Swartz, 2007). The way that they are depicted it looks like they were a real person just shrunk and bronzed. One of the main goals of sculptures during this period was to show strength and athleticism (Peters, 2006). They usually have exquisite muscular bodies and are usually depicted in an extreme pose. Also, during this period they depict everyday people including beggars, wives,mothers, butchers, etc., Also, this period provides the foundation for Roman sculpture. Humanism is the emphasis placed on the individual worth and dignity placed on a person.

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    • rebelogilbert profile image

      Gilbert Arevalo 2 years ago from Hacienda Heights, California

      Fascinating photo images, Alli.

    • Alli Rose profile image
      Author

      Alli Rose Smith 2 years ago from Washington, DC

      Thanks Rebel, I love art.

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