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  #1  
Old 01-06-2009, 04:25 PM
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bottegin bottegin is offline
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Neolithic Sculptures

Here I have found a few good photographs of neolithic figurative sculpture found on the island of Malta. they are dated to about 3000BC and some of them are quite incredible. I particularly like the sleeping lady.
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedi...l_Saflieni.jpg

http://www.flickr.com/photos/44035551@N00/670711839[/url]

I hope you enjoy these images.
Martin
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  #2  
Old 01-06-2009, 07:01 PM
Tlouis Tlouis is offline
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Thumbs up Re: Neolithic Sculptures

These little figures are wonderful. Sculpture in its purest form. I too like the sleeping woman best. She is delightful. Thankx for posting them.
Lou
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  #3  
Old 01-06-2009, 07:12 PM
rika rika is offline
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

The sleeping woman is a beauty.
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  #4  
Old 01-06-2009, 08:29 PM
mountshang mountshang is offline
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

I'm also enjoying that sleeping figure -- a lot.

But we can always ask whether this piece really is 5,000 years old -- or whether it was made yesterday -- as appears to have been the case with a famous Cycladic piece (c. 3,000 BC) in the Met.

I'm guessing it's ancient -- because it's high level of design seems to point to an ongoing tradition rather than a single, talented, entrepreneur.

But I could be wrong!
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  #5  
Old 01-06-2009, 10:33 PM
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

I think the fakes are the exception by and large as opposed to the rule, but I too adore ancient works like these. I read about them often and they're being discovered more and more, they just don't seem to make the news like they used to.
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  #6  
Old 01-06-2009, 11:12 PM
rika rika is offline
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

"The Thinker" and "Seated Woman" are dated 7,000-3,500 b.c.and were found in Cernavoda, Romania. This neolithic version of The Thinker is a worthy predecessor of the other famous one.

http://farm1.static.flickr.com/162/3...6aa279.jpg?v=0

You can rotate this image:

http://www.europeanvirtualmuseum.net...arest%20-%20RO
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  #7  
Old 01-07-2009, 12:52 PM
mountshang mountshang is offline
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

Quote:
Originally Posted by rika View Post
"The Thinker" and "Seated Woman" are dated 7,000-3,500 b.c.and were found in Cernavoda, Romania. This neolithic version of The Thinker is a worthy predecessor of the other famous one.

For me -- the quality of these pieces is no better than the frequent "whaddya think 'bout this one?" submissions that we get from beginning sculptors.

Even if these ancient pieces must have served a more important function than self-expression.
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  #8  
Old 01-07-2009, 01:28 PM
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

Hmm... "quality".. Interesting notion.. I think most ancient figurines are really just little "poke me's".. Like fishing lure's except with sex as the goal at the end of the string as opposed to a catfish.
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  #9  
Old 01-07-2009, 06:25 PM
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

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Originally Posted by mountshang View Post
For me -- the quality of these pieces is no better than the frequent "whaddya think 'bout this one?" submissions that we get from beginning sculptors.

.

that is funny mountshang i have often thought the same thing of many pieces i have seen you refer to as very good i would have thought these would be right up your ally
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  #10  
Old 01-08-2009, 09:32 AM
rika rika is offline
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

The Thinker was found in at a burial site, most likely its primary function had to do with mourning and/or afterlife. But I thought the craftsman/artist went beyond the requirements of the representation of his age, and was able to bring life, emotion to the piece with posture/gesture alone, without any facial expression. I find it interesting that the figure is very stylized but the little stool is realistically modelled.

Too bad Brancusi was already dead when these figures were discovered. I like to think he would have enjoyed their style. Afterall he originated from that same region, and his goal was to find the "essence" of things. Just like this Neolithic sculptor did.
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  #11  
Old 01-08-2009, 10:59 AM
mountshang mountshang is offline
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

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Originally Posted by chris 71 View Post
that is funny mountshang i have often thought the same thing of many pieces i have seen you refer to as very good i would have thought these would be right up your ally



Taste is a funny topic, isn't it ?

And according to the "Aesthetics Cop", it's foolish to discuss:


http://mountshang.blogspot.com/2009/...etics-cop.html


And yet -- reckless person that I am -- I think there can be important differences in the quality of one sqiggly line over another -- or one lump of clay over another -- or one song over another. (the differences seem much more obvious in music -- where a song is catchy enough to become a standard -- or it isn't)

The most obvious differences in the visual arts pertain to issues of resemblance: "is that really the way a surfer stands on a board?" --- "is that really the way a forehead recedes from a face?", "is that really the way a man sits in a chair?" --- and so those are the kind that get discussed here the most --- as if the goal were to make accurate displays for a wax museum.

And let's face it -- for its size, the wax museum is the most popular kind of museum on the planet. Every tourist trap has to have one.

But -- yes -- I do think there are important differences in quality between the pieces I've been showing and the things that Mrs. Jones made in her beginning sculpture class last week.

Even if those differences cannot be explained to those who cannot see them.

It's easier to talk about those differences within the confines of a specific style -- where exemplary pieces set the standard -- and maybe that's the only sensible context for such a discussion.

But that is very difficult in our modern world -- where our art museums have work from thousands of different periods and cultures -- from ancient ones that are continually being dug up to contemporary ones that are continually being invented.

And.. it would be reckless to assume that just because we found something that is 6,000 years old, it had any particular quality worthy of admiration then or now.
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  #12  
Old 01-08-2009, 03:21 PM
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bottegin bottegin is offline
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

I do not think that all ancient sculptures have artistic worth though they are all primary sources for archiologists. Having said this I must say that I consider some of them very expressive.
In fact I have chosen the initial two figurines because I feel that out of the neolithic figurines I know of they are those that have most artistic quality. I felt that I should share them with the community because I feel very proud that I live in a tiny country that has an are of around 300 square Kilometers and yet we have historical remains from a wide variety of periods. It is incredible that in such a small country we have over 40 stoneage temple sites.
In the end, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. I know of a number of contemporary (world renound) artists who sell their works for large sums of money and yet I personally do not feel that their work has much artistic value.
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  #13  
Old 01-08-2009, 05:58 PM
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

Quote:
Originally Posted by mountshang View Post
Taste is a funny topic, isn't it ?

And according to the "Aesthetics Cop", it's foolish to discuss:

.
i agree it is a fool that looks for logic in the chambers of the human heart. even though that is what we all do most i think. just a crazy ship of fools we are. all so curious as to the churnings of the others hearts
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  #14  
Old 01-09-2009, 10:40 AM
mountshang mountshang is offline
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

Quote:
Originally Posted by bottegin View Post
Here I have found a few good photographs of neolithic figurative sculpture found on the island of Malta. they are dated to about 3000BC and some of them are quite incredible. I particularly like the sleeping lady.
http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedi...l_Saflieni.jpg
Here's another picture of her from Wikipedia:

http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Fi...l_Saflieni.jpg



BTW -- the Wikipedia text says the piece is 3,000 years old, rather than dating to 3,000 BC.

What does the label in the museum itself say ? Maybe -- we should edit the Wikipedia entry ?

I'm also wondering whether this piece was discovered during the first two formal excavations -- or whether it's route to the collection was more circuitous.


And it's fun to speculate on what the piece was originally intended to represent.

A goddess dreaming --- or a funerary monument to a dead person ?

Or --- just a big, beautiful woman lying beside you in bed. (that would be my choice)
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  #15  
Old 01-09-2009, 11:26 AM
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

Quote:
Originally Posted by mountshang View Post

Or --- just a big, beautiful woman lying beside you in bed. (that would be my choice)

My choice would have her being a little smaller if she were lying beside me. Don't want to inadverntly wake up flat as a pancake.
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  #16  
Old 01-09-2009, 02:17 PM
Serendipity Serendipity is offline
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

That was very funny GlennT. She must have been adored to be fed so well in those times and rich! It's just wonderful to ponder on what the purpose of this little sorry BIG gem was?
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  #17  
Old 01-09-2009, 04:34 PM
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bottegin bottegin is offline
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

According to D.H.Trump, 2002, in his book 'Malta Prehistory and Temples the Saflieni phase is between 3300 B.C. and 3000B.C. in fact no metal objects were found in this temple that shows that it was definately before the Copper age that started around 3000 B.C.
I have found another website that has different views of the sculpture together with a short description on were they have been found. This information should answer some of the questions made earlier and lead to new ones at the same time.

http://web.genie.it/utenti/m/malta_m.../sleeping.htmlB.C.
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  #18  
Old 01-09-2009, 04:48 PM
Tlouis Tlouis is offline
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

I fail to understand how anyone can call this lovely little sculpture "sorry".
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  #19  
Old 01-10-2009, 11:44 PM
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

nice rotation on thinker
wild guess:

functional piece enhanced with aesthetic

long neck and head with back flattened and dished out for--something mounted at about a 60degree angle-----(a pole holding a lamp?) early desk lamp?

any other guesses as to functionality?
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  #20  
Old 01-12-2009, 08:56 AM
mountshang mountshang is offline
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Re: Neolithic Sculptures

Here's a few contemporary pieces that seem to have used the same model as "Sleeping Lady"

The sculptor is Franco Mauro Franchi (b. 1951)

The ancient piece is, of course, much much smaller (about 5" long ) --and has a more mysterious feeling.

But it's still the same girl.

She hasn't aged a day in 5,000 years.
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