Art essay greek works

Visit Website Did you know? Many of the sculptures from the Parthenon are on display at the British Museum in London. They are known as the Elgin Marbles. Temple Architecture With its rectangular stone platform, front and back porches the pronaos and the opisthodomos and rows of columns, the Parthenon was a commanding example of Greek temple architecture.

Art essay greek works

Background[ edit ] Wagner had been an enthusiast for the revolutions and had been an active participant in the Dresden Revolution ofas a consequence of which he was forced to live for many years in exile from Germany. His enthusiasm for such writing at this stage of his career is in part explained by his inability, in exile, to have his operas produced.

But it was also an opportunity for him to express and justify his deep-seated concerns about the true nature of opera as music drama at a time when he was beginning to write his libretti for his Ring cycleand turning his thoughts to the type of music it would require.

This was quite different from the music of popular grand operas of the period, which Wagner believed were a sell-out to commercialism in the arts. Wagner wrote the essay over two weeks in Paris [1] and sent it to a French political journal, the National; they refused it, but it was published in Leipzig and ran to a second edition.

Summary[ edit ] The following summary is based on the standard translation of Wagner's prose works by William Ashton Ellis, first published in Quotations are taken from this translation. Wagner notes that artists complain that economic uncertainty following the revolutions has damaged their prospects.

But such materialistic complaints are selfish and unjustified. Those who practised art for art's sake 'suffered also in the former times when others were rejoicing'.

Art essay greek works

Wagner portrays the Romans as brutal and sensuous, and the Church as having hypocritically betrayed Jesus 's gospel of Universal Love.

Moreover, 'the security of riches awoke in the ruling classes the desire for more refined enjoyment of their wealth'. In a critique which lies at the heart of much of his writings at this period and thereafter, and which is a clear dig at composers such as Giacomo MeyerbeerWagner complains: There are even many of our most popular artists who do not in the least conceal the fact, that they have no other ambition than to satisfy this shallow audience.

They are wise in their generation; for when the prince leaves a heavy dinner, the banker a fatiguing financial operation, the working man a weary day of toil, and go to the theatre: This argument is so convincing, that we can only reply by saying: We shall then be told, however, that if we do not employ Art in this manner, it must perish from out our public life: Wagner's own conception of Greek dramawhose nature we have lost.

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Only the great Revolution of Mankind, whose beginnings erstwhile shattered Grecian Tragedy, can win for us this Art-work. For only this Revolution can bring forth from its hidden depths, in the new beauty of a nobler Universalism, that which it once tore from the conservative spirit of a time of beautiful but narrow-meted culture—and tearing it, engulphed.

Elements of this are a condemnation of the rich and 'the mechanic's pride in the moral consciousness of his labour', not however to be confused with 'the windy theories of our socialistic doctrinaires' who believe that society might be reconstructed without overthrow.

Wagner's goal to which some of the aesthetic ideals of much later Soviet communism and of Fascism show some uncanny parallels is 'the strong fair Man, to whom Revolution shall give his Strength, and Art his Beauty!

Reconciling his two main inspirations, Wagner concludes 'Let us therefore erect the altar of the future, in Life as in the living Art, to the two sublimest teachers of mankind: Although Wagner at the time imagined his intended operas to constitute the 'perfect Art-works' mentioned in this essay and described further in " The Artwork of the Future " and " Opera and Drama ", with the aim of redeeming society through art, in the event practicality superseded the naive ideas and shallow historical interpretation expressed in these essays.

However, the concept of music drama as Wagner eventually forged it is undoubtedly rooted in the ideas he expressed at this time.

Greek Art Essays | Artscolumbia

Indeed, the essay is notable among other things for Wagner's first use of the term Gesamtkunstwerk total art work —in this case referring to his view of Greek drama as combining music, dance and poetry, rather than his later application of the term to his own works.

Curt von Westernhagen also detects in the essay the influence of Proudhon 's What is Property? Wagner had however been writing in part to deliberately provoke, on the basis that any notoriety was better than no notoriety.

In a letter of June to Franz Lisztone of his few influential allies at the time, he wrote "I must make people afraid of me. Well, I have no money, but what I do have is an enormous desire to commit acts of artistic terrorism"; [14] without denying the sincerity of Wagner's views at the time of writing, this article can be seen perhaps as one of those acts.

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During and immediately after the Russian Revolution ofthe ideas of Wagner's "Art and Revolution" were influential in the proletarian art movement and on the ideas of those such as Platon Kerzhentsevthe theorist of Proletcult Theatre.The art of any culture goes a long way in representing not only the culture’s aesthetic values, but also its way of life and higher ideals.

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