Spirits in the Material World (Part 3)
Years later after the Macedonian Kings reign of terror to some and happiness ruled by few, the Roman’s emerged as the enforces of modern day culture. Using similar tactics, they resorted to visual culture and narrative to describe what was happening during their day and age. Their tradition derived from the Hellenes. Relief sculptures alike, the Roman’s used their form of sculpture to promote ideal leadership.
In the first example, the “Agusta of Prima Porta” statue showed the Caesar of Rome wearing military style fashion which ultimately dominated the culture during the time. Beside him was a young child, presumably his offspring, holding his garment as the child looked up to him. “Looking up to him” could have been taken literally or physically yet it presents himself in high status of the physical attributes of an ancient Roman.
Next, Augustus Pontifex Maxima, wears his garment in proletariat fashion. He has the traditional robe that signifies himself as nobility within the city. Hellenistic styles varied from one Roman to another, but one could tell who belonged where based on clothing. Even in the third art piece, the relief cut “Ara Paris, Detail One, Woman and Child”, places similar emphasis on nobility casual wear in Rome by women and children. In terms of leadership, the women shared nurturing attributes similar to women today. The children help their hands as they were close to them. The children, of course, were the leaders of the next generation and taught to look, act and dress a certain way.
Notably all of the statues have gazes and are shifted to the side. These subtleties captivate the viewer. This is seen often throughout the time period as a folk way that dominates the culture.