Minoan Art: History & Images

An error occurred trying to load this video.

Try refreshing the page, or contact customer support.

Coming up next: What Is Graffiti? - Definition, History & Types

You're on a roll. Keep up the good work!

Take Quiz Watch Next Lesson
Your next lesson will play in 10 seconds
  • 0:03 The Minoans
  • 1:22 Pottery
  • 1:56 Palaces & Paintings
  • 3:03 Sculpture & Metals
  • 3:24 Lesson Summary
Save Save Save

Want to watch this again later?

Log in or sign up to add this lesson to a Custom Course.

Log in or Sign up

Speed Speed
Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Jessica Elam Miller

Jessica has taught college History and has a Master of Arts in History

In this lesson, we'll explore various types of artwork created by the Minoans. Minoans were early Greeks who created vivid images in their artwork, which became a popular export to surrounding areas.

The Minoans

The Minoans were a group of the earliest Greeks. They lived on the Island of Crete in the Mediterranean Sea. They produced beautiful artistic works, some of which have survived and are being preserved today.

The Minoan civilization first existed around 3300 BCE. Minoans were traders, importing and exporting goods with surrounding regions. They developed a system of trade and utilized the natural harbors existing on their mountainous island. Remains of Minoan artwork, like pottery, have been found in other areas. The colorful images and expert craftsmanship helped them become very popular.

Much of the art produced during this time has deteriorated and been destroyed. The surviving pieces of art can be found in museums throughout the world. Although many of the pieces being preserved are just fragments, there exist some whole artifacts.

The Minoans were subject to long periods of peace. Artwork from this period often depicted daily life for common people. It contained images of current events and the Minoans' physical environment. Minoan art also depicted religious rituals and gods and goddesses. Bulls were also a popular image because of their religious significance. Minoans used images of bulls to emphasize strength and fertility.


Pottery from the early Minoan civilization has been found depicting spirals and shapes, like triangles, curved lines, and fish bones. With the introduction of the potter's wheel, production became more efficient. Kamares were vessels with thin walls and large curves that were popular in other areas like Egypt and Syria. As time passed, pottery evolved to depict other images. These included images of nature, such as flowers, birds, and fish. Later, images of flowers and animals held more variety.

To unlock this lesson you must be a Study.com Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use Study.com

Become a Study.com member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about Study.com
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create an account