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The Study of Western & Prehistoric Era Art

The Study of Western & Prehistoric Era Art
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Ain Ghazal Statues

These statues were named for where they were found in Jordan. They are Neolithic artifacts that are seen as the first instance of human representation on a large scale.

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The Venus of Sarab

A sculpture from Iran that was made in the Neolithic era. It is thought to represent a goddess of fertility.

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Dwelling of Skara Brae

A Neolithic settlement discovered in Scotland. The stone houses found here contain interior items.

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Stonehenge

A structure built during the Neolithic Era in Wiltshire, UK. It is a stone megalith. Some believe it was used as a funerary complex or for religious purposes.

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Modern Architecture: Impacts of Roman Influence

We see the continued influence of this culture in many homes, which contain elements that originated in the temples of this civilization.

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Urban Centers

Areas where large amounts of people lived together. The Greeks are credited with building the first of these in European history.

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Formal Elements

You focus on this part of art history when considering its overall aesthetic, the materials used to make it, and any other elements related to its composition.

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Criticism

This aspect of art history focuses on assessing the impact of a piece and gauging its significance.

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Provenance

A biographical element associated with art history. This looks at the origin of a piece of art, including who created it, individuals who owned it, and/or the people who funded its creation.

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Iconography

This refers to the motifs or themes used by artists to symbolically communicate a message.

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Stylistic Elements

These deal with the movement a piece of art connects to, or the specific style it is a part of.

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23 cards in set

Flashcard Content Overview

Accessing this flashcard set can give you the chance to review components of art history, including:

  • Iconography
  • Stylistic elements
  • Provenance
  • Formal elements
  • Criticism

You'll be able to review examples of prehistoric architecture, such as:

  • Stonehenge
  • Dwelling of Skara Brae

These cards also focus on the following specific pieces of prehistoric art:

  • Venus of Sarab
  • Venus of Dolni Vestonice
  • Venus of Willendorf
  • Ain Ghazal Statues

Additionally, these cards cover cave paintings found in France and Spain and the first appearance of writing in the world.

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Stylistic Elements

These deal with the movement a piece of art connects to, or the specific style it is a part of.

Iconography

This refers to the motifs or themes used by artists to symbolically communicate a message.

Provenance

A biographical element associated with art history. This looks at the origin of a piece of art, including who created it, individuals who owned it, and/or the people who funded its creation.

Criticism

This aspect of art history focuses on assessing the impact of a piece and gauging its significance.

Formal Elements

You focus on this part of art history when considering its overall aesthetic, the materials used to make it, and any other elements related to its composition.

Urban Centers

Areas where large amounts of people lived together. The Greeks are credited with building the first of these in European history.

Modern Architecture: Impacts of Roman Influence

We see the continued influence of this culture in many homes, which contain elements that originated in the temples of this civilization.

Stonehenge

A structure built during the Neolithic Era in Wiltshire, UK. It is a stone megalith. Some believe it was used as a funerary complex or for religious purposes.

Dwelling of Skara Brae

A Neolithic settlement discovered in Scotland. The stone houses found here contain interior items.

The Venus of Sarab

A sculpture from Iran that was made in the Neolithic era. It is thought to represent a goddess of fertility.

Ain Ghazal Statues

These statues were named for where they were found in Jordan. They are Neolithic artifacts that are seen as the first instance of human representation on a large scale.

Megaliths

Large boulders or stones were used to make these structures in the Neolithic era. They were generally used as tombs.

Venus of Dolni Vestonice

A clay figurine discovered in the Czech Republic that was made during the Upper Paleolithic era. It is shaped like a nude woman who has large breasts.

Petroglyphs

These are carvings or pickings made to depict images, usually in caves. They may have been used to show animals or hunting trips. Some were created during the Upper Paleolithic.

Denisova Cave

This is a location in Russia where jewelry made during the Upper Paleolithic from eggshell beads and stone was found.

Venus of Willendorf

A figure carved out of limestone into the shape of a woman, made during the Upper Paleolithic. This was discovered in Austria.

Cave Paintings: Chauvet-Pont-d'Arc

The paintings in this cave are mainly of animals, along with handprints and red dots. These caves are found in France, in the Ardeche valley. They are the oldest of these paintings yet found.

Cave Paintings: Lascaux

These paintings include animals, a representation of a human, and abstract elements. They were created more recently than those in Chauvet.

Cave Paintings: Altamira

A location for cave paintings in Spain. Animals are the primary subject of these paintings and the painters used mostly black and red to create their works.

Cave Paintings: Purpose

There is no definitive way to know why these paintings were created, but many theorize that they had some kind of ceremonial use because they are hard to access.

Cave Paintings: Timeline

These works of art are dated to around 38,000 BCE. This makes this time period significant, as they are the first examples of visual art.

Early Writing: Americas

We have evidence that there was written communication in this area of the world by the year 500 BCE.

Early Writing: Mesopotamia

This area of the world shows signs of written communication from around the year 3,600 BCE.

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