Professor Rainer Mack
20 October 2014
Reflective Essay #2 I believe this argument is valid to the extent that Grecian and Prehistoric art both share and represent an unrealistic and unattainable viewpoint on the human form. Although they differ in aesthetic preference and representation, the idea behind the creation of them shares the same foundation that the human body is a blank canvas that society molds to their ideal perspective of that time. Given these differences, I believe that this argument as an explanation is valid once the aesthetics of both Grecian and Prehistoric art are put to the side. Despite the immense difference in physical features and technique in creating these works of art, the underlying purpose has remained the same throughout time: to idealize the human body in a nearly impossible, insurmountable figure and immortalize it as art and embed it into our society’s culture. Although Greek art is deemed much more “realistic” by society in comparison to the grotesquely magnified and improbable shape of Prehistoric art, Greek sculptures still represent an unrealistic, elusive, and impossible form of the human body. In the BBC documentary, “How Art Made the World”, it is noted that in ancient Greek society, men and women were obsessed with having the perfect body and particularly, men were striving to achieve the glorified anatomy that was comparable to gods. It is from this explanation that gives me the impression that Grecian art is also “unrealistic”. How could any mortal compare to the prowess and perfection that consists of a god? And for that very reason, isn’t that what differentiates human and deity in the first place? To try to attain the unattainable is of course, impossible, but through immaculate expression through sculpture, ancient Grecian art was able to capture the essence of what perfection was deemed to be at the time. I believe the term “realistic” is an appropriate descriptor when talking about art but only so in the general sense.