Final Project – Walking Tour

Hello, and welcome to my tour.  My name is Perel, but you can call me Perri.  Today we will be talking about Egyptian art and the use of Hieroglyphics/hieroglyphs within them. Hieroglyphics was the written language of Ancient Egypt.  “It was in form of objects–animals, plants, and household items–that the ancient Egyptians saw around them every day.” (Teeter) Image result for rosetta stoneOur first piece of ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics that we’ll look at is the Rosetta Stone.  The Rosetta stone is the most well-known reason of why scholars can understand hieroglyphics in today’s modern world.  It had writing in hieroglyphics and other languages to translate what was being written for all those people who couldn’t read hieroglyphics.

The second piece of ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics that we’ll look at is papyrus and the hieroglyphics written on it.  Papyrus is a plant that was used for a number of objects, but the most important us was as a “writing surface” for things like “household and administrative documents, letters, contracts and other legal texts, illustrated narratives, and religious texts.”

This piece of papyrus has hieroglyphics on it since that was the only form of writing that was available. There are more than 800 used hieroglyphics, but the most common are the twenty-four that are used to sound out words (like the English letters).

Next we are going to look at the amulets.  These were put on jewelry, put around the house to beautify the dwelling, or buried with a mummy to have positive energy.  Many Egyptians carried them around as a form of good luck and to bring positive energy.  Some of the amulets had writing on it, hieroglyphics, to write exactly what energy they wanted the amulets to bring them.   They were the perfect thing to carry around because of their size, they were convenient.

 The next thing we’ll look at is “Mummy Mask of a Woman  with a Jeweled Garland”.  THis was a mask placed over the mummy before it was placed in the tomb.  There are paintings all around it to tell the story of the person in the mummy, to bring good energy to the persons transition to the afterlife, and to beautify the mummy so that the person is honored.  Within the beautiful painting there are hieroglyphics.  This is done to explain some of the painting, to give some positive words, and to identify the person within the mummy.


The last piece we are going to look at are these weapons.  These were used by the Egyptians in battle.  The curved edge was sharp and was a knife to fight the enemies.  The hieroglyphics were engraved onto these items to give the fighter good luck in battle, and to mark who’s weapon is whoms.  Each hieroglyph can be an entire word so even though there are about ten hieroglyphics on the piece it could say numerous things.

This tour was designed to show the different ways in which hieroglyphics were used and the different objects it was used on and I hope I accomplished that.

  • Kamrin, Janice. “Papyrus in Ancient Egypt.” In Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2000–. http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/papy/hd_papy.htm (March 2015)
  • Patch, Diana Craig. “Egyptian Amulets.” In Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History. New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 2000–. http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/hd/egam/hd_egam.htm (October 2004)
  • “Rosetta Stone.” Britannica Online Academic Edition, 2018, pp. Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc.
  • Teeter, Emily. “Egyptian Hieroglyphs.” Calliope, vol. 14, no. 9, 2004, pp. 7–10.
  • The British Museum, “Paintings from the Tomb-chapel of Nebamun,” in Smarthistory, August 29, 2016, accessed December 12, 2018, https://smarthistory.org/paintings-from-the-tomb-chapel-of-nebamun/.

The Met Museum Visit

The art styles of Baroque and Renaissance has similarities but also many differences.  The Renaissance time period began about 1300 A.D. and the Baroque time period started immediately after at about 1600 A.D..

The main and major difference between the two genre’s of art is the formations of lines and angles within the piece.  Renaissance has straight and distinguishable lines while Baroque has curved and ‘messy’ lines.


 This Renaissance piece “The Birth of the Virgin” (1467), is a good example of straight lines and posing.  The woman who just gave birth is posing in her bed and doesn’t seem natural.  The painting in its entirety seems to be a posed, stiff moment.  Even the baby, who is getting washed up, is standing straight and being posed.  This painting is very unrealistic and stiff. It almost seems like the body movements are fake.  The baby and children are deciphered as short adults.


This Baroque piece, “The Abduction of the Sabine Woman” (1633-34), shows the drama and interactiveness of the Baroque period.  You can’t tell where one body begins and another one ends.  All the lines are curved, the hand, legs and bodys of the people are curved as if they are doing yoga while fighting or something.  The babies look and act like what they are supposed to be; babies.

Unit 2 Summary

Unit 2, we finally got into the actual art.  We went into the ancient world and discussed the differences and similarities of the art pieces of three different areas; Mesopotamia, Egypt, and Greek-Roman.  The differences in the art evolve because of the differences in the culture.

Let’s start with Mesopotamian art.  Their art had the ideas of hieratic scale.  The more important the person the bigger they were portrayed in the piece.  In the Standard of Ur, The biggest person is the king. Even when he’s sitting he is still big enough to break the registar.  The servants look like children compared to him.   Their art is also made to represent their wins and conquers.  To “honor” the strength and power that they have.  The people in their art are very stiff in movement and don’t really have identifying details.

In Egyptian art there are many symbols to represent other things.  Usually using animals to represent the different Gods that they have.  Since there is a different animal to represent each person, it is relatively easy to distinguish between the different people.  In the Narmer Palette there are many different animals engraved into it for the different people and this is just a “utensil” to hold makeup.  Also the crowns represent the different sections of Egypt (North and South).  There also is a component of hieratic scale.  The God or King of most importance is the largest in the art piece.  With the least significant “character” as the smallest.

In Greek-Roman art is where the idea of humanism starts showing in the art.  The belief of humanism is where humans are the center of everything.  This belief is present in their nude statues.  Many pf the Romans statues were copies of Greek statues however, the Greeks used copper which melted down, and the Romans used stone.  The Kroisos is a nude sculpture of a boy used mark and honor a grave.  Their standards of beauty were different than anywhere else at that time.  They looked at the nude body as beautiful, especially on a young, buff man.  The art started out as stiff with no movement but after a while the statues started having curved lines as opposed to straight lines.  Also, the art was detailed enough that you were able to see the movement in the muscles through the skin.  Most of the sculptures also didn’t have any facial hair, since that wasn’t beautiful, unless you were really important and didn’t have any time to shave.

Humanism in Greek and Roman Art

Humanism is an ancient idea that is still very current today. It is the idea that man is the center and everything revolves around it.  Man is basically the sun.  Humans’ needs are the most important.  This idea is very obvious within Roman and Greek art. Their art is very different than the art of the rest of the world, specifically Egyptian art.

Since Humanism is all about man, their [Greeks and Romans] art was made to honor man.  Egyptian art was made for after life and Deities, they served a purpose for a greater being(s).  One of the major differences between the two types are that the Greeks and Romans honor and love the human form, which means that most, if not all, of their art has people naked. They enjoy the look of the nude body so that’s what their art is; many, many naked people.  The Egyptians are making art for a higher power so they don’t need to show off the body, especially since being naked wasn’t as amazing as it was in Greece and Rome, who literally did everything in the nude.

Egyptians also used a lot of animal figures for higher representation of things, but Romans and Greeks believed that there is nothing higher that a human body.

For example, the Egyptian painting of Anubis.  He is clothed and portrayed with the head of a dog to signify something.  Many times he was painted on the inside of a coffin to protect the soul.  Then the Greeks/Romans had Kroisos, a nude sculpture of a boy.  It was also used for a death, but was shown loud and proud to mark the grave.



Brooklyn Museum Part 2

Part 2: Soul of a Nation

The entire exhibit was so beautiful I wasn’t sure which Art piece to choose but when I finally saw, “Revolutionary” by Jarrell Wadsworth, I knew that this painting would be the piece I chose.

The painting is of a black Woman wearing what seems to be a uniform to fight in, with her fist clenched around a microphone or walkie talkie, and her mouth open wide.  The bullets on her suit seem to be made with colorful crayons.  I saw this as the woman using anything she has, even crayons, to fight for what she believes in. She may not have much but at least she has something.  There are so many words that its hard to read what’s written but if you focus on one spot you can see the one word, I believe the artist is trying to show that the amount of problems that she has is a lot and if you look at it from far you wont be able to focus and change it, but if you start by focusing on one place, at one word, change can start to happen. This painting brings change along with beauty.

I chose the painting because I like the message, and that from far away you can’t really tell that there are words but the closer you get the more you see.  I also really liked the meaning behind it and that it was quite obvious what it was.

Brooklyn Museum Assignment Part 1

Part One: Ancient World

The piece of art I chose was the “Painted Coffin Interior”.  It was the inside bottom of the coffin where an Egyptian King would be buried on top of, after being mummified.  What originally drew me to observe the piece were the colors used.  It was the only art in the room that had any color, and I love colors.

I believe the painting done was specific towards the King that was buried there.  It tell the story of his life and the things he accomplished.  The biggest figure in the center of the painting is the King of the dead, Osiris, due to hieratic scale, it makes sense that he is four time the size of the other figures, since the who;e point of the painting is for death.  The mummy would be laid on top of it, so the deceased could be associated with the King, who was reborn in the afterlife.

The birds with heads are called ba-soul.  They are the part of the soul that can travel between living world and the death world.  It was believed that only kings had these souls, so the ba-souls on the top registers were previous kings.

There are two figures holding Osiris up, Anubis and Horus.  Anubis (on the left), is a God who watches over the dead.  He was the God that embalmed Osiris after he died.  Horus (on the right) was the symbol of  kingship over Egypt.

The circles on the top of the painting, I believe, are there to show the circle of life.  Even though the King’s human life is over his soul continues on in the after life, so there are more than one circle; the soul goes on.

Summary of Unit 1

Throughout Unit 1 we spoke about Formal Analysis.  We discussed the physical look of a piece of art and searched for the clues of a deeper understanding.  Formal Analysis is actually taking a piece and looking at the physical color, line, shape, material, etc.  We took the knowledge about the formal analysis and was able to decipher a whole new meaning to the piece.

We also discussed that because of formal analysis two painters might draw the same muse but the outcome of the two pieces of art would be completely different.  Each artist places items and lines into their works of art for a specific reason.

In the “Standard of Ur” there is a specific reason for each scratch.  Nothing is just a coincidence, everything is shown because the artist wants it to be.  The king is larger on purpose, and the outfits are different on purpose.  We see this and see the deeper meaning because of formal analysis.

Many works of art cause change and enlightenment in the world.  Some are obvious within the art and some you need to have an understanding about art and the reasons behind it.

Formal Analysis

The Formal Analysis of a painting is the physical look of the painting.  There are many different properties (ie: line, color, size, material, composition, etc.)

Not only do you have to discuss what you see, but also figure out what  the image is portraying and analyzing the meaning.  By looking at the physical features and focusing on exactly the way they are placed within a piece of art might give you insight of why the artist placed it there.  Most of the placings are intentional and you will turn up understanding the artists mindset by just looking at the physicality of the piece.

Pedagogy and Power

Fiere talks about the “banking” method of learning.  Every relationship has two parties and in this relationship one party is a narrating Subject (the teacher) and the other is a patient listening object (the student).  This is a one way relationship, the students put nothing towards it.  It turns the student into a box or container waiting to be filled.  The more completely the teacher fills the “container”, the better a teachers he/she is. The more meekly the students allow themselves to be filled, the better students they are.

I don’t agree with this concept of teaching. It is implying that students don’t know anything and can’t input into the lesson and that teachers know all the knowledge and have the correct pieces of informations.  I believe, at different ages, students have differents ideas that they can share, and smarts that teachers can learn.  When I was younger, my mom (who is a teacher) always said, “Teaching is learning.”  She would come home from work and tell me stories of things her students did, and what she learned from them.

I thing to get the utmost knowledge into students is to teach them using a more ‘friendly’ method of teaching.