General Question

SundayKittens's avatar

History/Art/Smartheaded Jellies: What parts of Greek life and art are crucial to teach?

Asked by SundayKittens (5834points) September 16th, 2010

I’m doing a unit on ancient Greek art in my General Art class.
I’m having a hard time narrowing down what to teach them. I spent an entire semester in college just on Greek art, not to mention I’ve got to keep it manageable for their teen brains. Help!
Edit: This is a visual art class.

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

11 Answers

JilltheTooth's avatar

Visual art or all art? Greek play themes have been copied and carried over throughout the centuries in literature and performance art. I f I had the memory for it I would cite examples, but at the moment I’m doing a dumber than dirt thing. Sorry.
If you can relate this to popular culture, they’ll eat it up.

Seek's avatar

General Art…

I’d mention that the Classical Age of Greek sculpture focused on the “ideal” of a person, as opposed to what the person really looked like. The boys at least would love an overview of “wet drapery”, and it would be a great time to discuss the differences between “nude” and “naked”.

I also agree with talking about the dawn of theatricality, if your class covers such things, and I’m kind of an architecture nerd, so bring up the Acropolis.

iamthemob's avatar

I would definitely have something on greek pottery (not that you need the link).

It clearly varies through the different periods, it’s active, it merges sculpture and painting, and it in many ways (along with theater) was how they communicated their mythology.

janbb's avatar

This is a small factoid but it amazed me when I learned it; that the statues on the Parthenon were originally painted vividly. Might lead into a good discussion on how art looked in its own time and the distorted lenses we now view it from. I would also talk about the “Elgin” marbles and the concept of art pillaging and the demands for return by the original country.

iamthemob's avatar

@janbb – weren’t most marble sculptures and reliefs painted? I was intrigued hearing that as well…they’re all so white now….

janbb's avatar

@iamthemob Yes, you’re right. I just first heard it in the context of the Parthenon so that stuck with me.

thekoukoureport's avatar

first thought was to teach them the archetechtual wonders of the parthenon.

SundayKittens's avatar

I just stumbled across this on, they were listing misconceptions that we want to believe. Thoughts?

The misconception: Ancient Greece was an important nation in the ancient world and it gave us democracy
Why we want to believe it: Because virtually every non-university teacher teaches it

Ancient Greece is not the name of a nation – it is the name of the region in which up to 1,000 individual cultures lived and worked alongside each other. Each culture had its own rulers, its own armies, its own independence from the others. We have heard of Sparta and the Spartans – that is just one of the multitude of different states within the Greek region. The people of all city-states were united by language and race but wars between them was not at all uncommon which is why the ancient Olympics were governed by a special rule guaranteeing protection to competitors traveling from their state to the host state.

Seek's avatar

@SundayKittens Absolutely true. For a citizen of Athens to be banished was effectively the end of their lives as they knew it. And today, it’s only a city! To the Athenians, it was an entire civilisation. Same with the Spartans, the Trojans, the Peloponnesians, Minoans, Mycenaeans…

thekoukoureport's avatar

and they all became united under Alexander the Great! who allowed these city/states to flourish provided they paid homage to a central govenment! plus the greeks are the greatest society ever. Responsible for everything we know today.

Oh did I tell you I was Greek.

angelique_1's avatar

i think they are both important to learn. to learn about other countries and cultures is wonderful. to learn about different forms of art is also wonderful to learn.

Answer this question




to answer.

This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.

Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther