Okay, y’all, I am TIRED. 30 days of posting is rough, especially when each requires so much research and thinking. It has been super fun and an amazing challenge, but PHEW! 5 more days. I am delighted that I have these precious artworks to write about right now, because they are CUTE and light and lovely, and that is all my brain can handle at this moment I’m sorry to say.
SO CUTE! Look at the second one holding the little baby. I can’t take it. Cute.
Okay sorry, I guess you probably want to learn something now instead of hearing me ramble and gush about these precious Cypriot sculptures from 3,500 years ago. CUTE! So. Very. Cute.
These sculptures are from Cyprus which is in the Eastern Mediterranean sea south of Turkey and north of Egypt.
Unfortunately, we have another prehistoric art situation with these lovely bird ladies. I did some reading from some Met Museum publications like this one (Isn’t the Met amazing? The have all these free pdfs on their website of their books and publications. They are so generous.). It basically just listed their key visual characteristics like: (Source: Karageorghis)
- bent arms with hands resting on sides of body, against the stomach, or holding an infant
- birdlike face and large nose
- large pierced ears (some still have earrings in tact)
- accentuated pubic triangle and obvious breasts
- flat head with curved hair at temples
- possible influences of Syria and Mycenae
- ranging from 5 to 8 inches tall
Because they were made in prehistory, before writing, we are left to wonder why they made them and what they mean. In the meantime, we can enjoy looking at something fun and delightful, and that is perfectly okay with art to just enjoy it. It doesn’t always have to teach us something.
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Art Discussion Questions
- Describe these sculptures.
- What can you tell about the people who made these based on what you see?
- Why do you think these sculptures were made?
Cyprus Sculpture Art Project
Make a part animal-part person figure out of air-dry clay.
Ancient Art from Cyprus: The Cesnola Collection in The Metropolitan Museum of Art, Karageorghis, Vassos, in collaboration with Joan R. Mertens and Marice E. Rose (2000)
That’s it! Thanks for reading. I’d love to hear your thoughts about the artwork in the comments. Click here to find more art from around the world, and come back tomorrow for another visit to the USA to look at some more American Indian art in honor of Thanksgiving! Have a Happy Thanksgiving tomorrow to all my US friends. 🙂