The Egyptian artistic workmanship denotes to the art created by the civilization of Ancient Egypt, situated in the basin of the Nile River in North Africa. This fine art had its sovereignty in religion amid a drawn out stretch of time, around 3000 years BC. This art form outlined diverse times that help with the characterization of distinctive elaborate kingdom: Season Tinita, Old Kingdom, Middle Kingdom, New Kingdom, Ptolemaic Era and numerous short-term periods. But while these are real different times in history, the truth is that it insists only small nuances in artistic expression that, in general, always follows a creased continuity and homogeneity.
The time and historical events took charge of eliminating the vestiges of this ancient art. But even so, it was possible to rediscover something of its legacy in the nineteenth century, when systematic excavations yielded works, able to fascinate researchers, collectors and even the amateurs. From the moment you decipher the hieroglyphics on the Rosetta Stone can take steps safe on the way to understanding the culture, history, mentality, way of life and of course the artistic motivation of the ancient Egyptians.
Egyptian Art History
The art in ancient Egypt came about in 3000 BC and had a strong religious representation, due to the belief that the people had life after death. The walls of the pyramids have paintings representing the daily life of nobles in designs with two dimensions only, without concern for the prospect.
The Egyptian art on the one hand, is marked by advanced writing and religion. The art was able to determine the way of life, social relations and hierarchies, directing all forms of artistic representation of the people.
People of Egypt were polytheistic, that is, they believed in many gods and these could change the course of life of each. They believed also in the afterlife. Based on this, we see tombs, statues and vases that were left with the dead. All Egyptian architecture, for example, pyramids, mortuary constructs were built in, called tombs. They were identical to those homes where the pharaohs lived. People from social class most important were buried in mastabas, which gave rise to the great pyramids.
From 1560 BC, Egyptian art comes to reflect movement and delicacy of form, but became known by the lack of concern with depth. (The trunk was painted front while the head was painted profile).
Highlights that marked the grandeur and power of Pharaoh:
- The Pyramid of Djoser in the region of Saqqara, built by architect Imhotep;
- Desert Giza pyramids: Cheops, Chephren and Mycerinus, the largest first.
- Sphinx Ancient Egypt: a representation of the pharaoh Khafre, the best known.
Much of the paintings were made on the walls of the pyramids. These works depicted the lives of the pharaohs, the actions of the gods, the afterlife and other topics of religious life. These drawings were made so that the figures were displayed profile. The Egyptians did not work with the technique of perspective (three-dimensional images). The drawings were accompanied by texts, made in hieroglyphic writing (words and expressions were represented by drawings). The inks were obtained in nature (mineral powder, organic substances, etc.).
The art in this period was standardized based on religious criteria; thus not made use of creativity or imagination. The paintings were anonymous and did not record the artist’s style, but the pharaoh. The first rule to follow was: The law of straightforwardness: It was mandatory and consisted in representing people with the front trunk, legs, head and legs were profile. So it was not a naturalistic art. Sculpture, despite the conventions, the statues was represented according to the particular traits of the person, especially the position it occupied in society, their work and racial traits.
Then, in the Middle Kingdom, Egypt presented the sculptures and pictures with an ideal and not real appearance, for example, the kings. Already in the New Kingdom, the apex of the Egyptian growth is marked by the reconstruction of unfinished temples.
A new type of column, in the most preserved temples, Carnac and Luxor in honor of the God Amon, stood out because they were worked with papyrus and lotus flower. One of the monuments that stood out was the queen Hatshepsut’s tomb.
The tombs of several pharaohs were found in several gold sculptures. Egyptian artists were well aware of the artwork techniques in gold. There were statuettes representing gods and goddesses of the Egyptian polytheistic religion. Gold was also used to make death masks that served as protection for the mummy’s face.
The Egyptians developed several mathematical knowledge. Thus, they managed to erect works that survive to this day. Temples, palaces and pyramids were built in honor of the gods and pharaohs. They were grand and imposing as it should show all the power of Pharaoh. They were built with stone blocks using hand-slave labor for heavy work.