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Greece or Spain pt. 2

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The Louvre holds the Venus de Milo and the Winged Venus of Samothrace:

The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston contains the delicate Aphrodite of Chios, possibly by that greatest of Greek sculptors, Praxiteles:

And of course the great Laocoon group is in the Vatican:

This is not to suggest that Greece does not hold its own share of splendours. Most importantly... in terms of sculpture... they have the most complete grouping by Praxiteles... the sensuous Hermes with the Infant Dionysus.

And there are any number of other marvelous sculptural groupings, such as this humorous scene of Aphrodite whacking the horny satyr with her slipper:

Greece also houses a great majority of the classical Greek bronzes... most of which were discovered only recently off the coast of the Greek islands in sunken ships. These offer some of the finest look at Greek sculptural art, as opposed to the later, often stiff, Roman copies:

And of course we have the temples:

the Parthenon:

and other structures of the Acropolis:

The art of the Byzantine Empire suffered a similar pillaging. Like the Romans, the Venetians sacked Constantinople and made off with much of the finest examples of Byzantine art and artists... most notably the great horses now before San Marco, in Venice:

One must also face the fact that much of the finest Byzantine art being produced in the capitol of Constantinople, was lost, destroyed, or is currently held in the now-Turkish city of Istanbul. One might also recognize that Ravenna... in Italy... was the second great site of Byzantine art.



  1. Mutatis-Mutandis's Avatar
    Does anyone do stone sculptures anymore?

    The amount of detail that go into those is just astounding. I can't imagine the amount of time and dedication that went into them. Did the artists have helpers for menial tasks with the sculptures?