Egypt art and architecture pdf
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- "Read Like an Egyptian" – Art and Architecture in Ancient Egypt - Part 5.pdf
- Guide to Ancient Egyptian Art
- The Art and Architecture of Middle Kingdom Egypt, c.2055-1650 BCE
Spanning over two thousand years, ancient Egypt was not one stable civilization but in constant change and upheaval, commonly split into periods by historians. Likewise, ancient Egyptian architecture is not one style, but a set of styles differing over time but with some commonalities. The best known example of ancient Egyptian architecture are the Egyptian pyramids while excavated temples, palaces, tombs and fortresses have also been studied. Most buildings were built of locally available mud brick and limestone by levied workers. Monumental buildings were built via the post and lintel method of construction.
"Read Like an Egyptian" – Art and Architecture in Ancient Egypt - Part 5.pdf
Spanning over two thousand years, ancient Egypt was not one stable civilization but in constant change and upheaval, commonly split into periods by historians.
Likewise, ancient Egyptian architecture is not one style, but a set of styles differing over time but with some commonalities. The best known example of ancient Egyptian architecture are the Egyptian pyramids while excavated temples, palaces, tombs and fortresses have also been studied.
Most buildings were built of locally available mud brick and limestone by levied workers. Monumental buildings were built via the post and lintel method of construction. Many buildings were aligned astronomically. Columns were typically adorned with capitals decorated to resemble plants important to Egyptian civilization, such as the papyrus plant.
Ancient Egyptian architectural motifs have influenced architecture elsewhere, reaching the wider world first during the Orientalizing period and again during the nineteenth-century Egyptomania. Due to the scarcity of wood,  the two predominant building materials used in ancient Egypt were sun-baked mud brick and stone , mainly limestone, but also sandstone and granite in considerable quantities.
The core of the pyramids consisted of locally quarried stone, mud bricks, sand or gravel. For the casing, stones were used that had to be transported from farther away, predominantly white limestone from Tura and red granite from upper Egypt. Ancient Egyptian houses were made out of mud collected from the damp banks of the Nile river.
It was placed in moulds and left to dry in the hot sun to harden for use in construction. If the bricks were intended to be used in a royal tomb like a pyramid, the exterior bricks would also be finely chiselled and polished.
Many Egyptian towns have disappeared because they were situated near the cultivated area of the Nile Valley and were flooded as the river bed slowly rose during the millennia, or the mud bricks of which they were built were used by peasants as fertilizer.
Others are inaccessible, new buildings having been erected on ancient ones. However, the dry, hot climate of Egypt preserved some mud brick structures. Also, many temples and tombs have survived because they were built on high ground unaffected by the Nile flood and were constructed of stone.
Thus, our understanding of ancient Egyptian architecture is based mainly on religious monuments,  massive structures characterized by thick, sloping walls with few openings, possibly echoing a method of construction used to obtain stability in mud walls. In a similar manner, the incised and flatly modeled surface adornment of the stone buildings may have derived from mud wall ornamentation. Although the use of the arch was developed during the fourth dynasty , all monumental buildings are post and lintel constructions, with flat roofs constructed of huge stone blocks supported by the external walls and the closely spaced columns.
Exterior and interior walls, as well as the columns and piers , were covered with hieroglyphic and pictorial frescoes and carvings painted in brilliant colors. Other common motifs include palm leaves, the papyrus plant, and the buds and flowers of the lotus. In addition, these pictorial frescoes and carvings allow us to understand how the Ancient Egyptians lived, statuses, wars that were fought, and their beliefs.
This was especially true in recent years when exploring the tombs of Ancient Egyptian officials. Ancient Egyptian temples were aligned with astronomically significant events, such as solstices and equinoxes , requiring precise measurements at the moment of the particular event. Measurements at the most significant temples may have been ceremonially undertaken by the Pharaoh himself.
As early as BC the architect Imhotep made use of stone columns whose surface was carved to reflect the organic form of bundled reeds, like papyrus , lotus and palm ; in later Egyptian architecture faceted cylinders were also common.
Their form is thought to derive from archaic reed-built shrines. Carved from stone, the columns were highly decorated with carved and painted hieroglyphs , texts, ritual imagery and natural motifs. Egyptian columns are famously present in the Great Hypostyle Hall of Karnak circa BC , where columns are lined up in 16 rows, with some columns reaching heights of 24 metres. One of the most important type are the papyriform columns.
The origin of these columns goes back to the 5th Dynasty. They are composed of lotus papyrus stems which are drawn together into a bundle decorated with bands: the capital, instead of opening out into the shape of a bellflower, swells out and then narrows again like a flower in bud. The base, which tapers to take the shape of a half-sphere like the stem of the lotus, has a continuously recurring decoration of stipules. At the Luxor Temple , the columns are reminiscent of papyrus bundles, perhaps symbolic of the marsh from which the ancient Egyptians believed the creation of the world to have unfolded.
Illustration of papyriform capitals, in The Grammar of Ornament. Columns with Hathoric capitals, at the Temple of Isis from island Philae. Fragments of a palm column; — BC; granite; diameter beneath the ropes of the neck The pyramids, which were built in the Fourth Dynasty, testify to the power of the pharaonic religion and state.
They were built to serve both as grave sites and also as a way to make their names last forever. It is not as tall as his father's pyramid but he was able to give it the impression of appearing taller by building it on a site with a foundation 33 feet 10 m higher than his father's. The face of a human, possibly a depiction of the pharaoh, on a lion's body was seen as a symbol of divinity among the Greeks fifteen hundred years later.
Popular culture leads people to believe that Pyramids are highly confusing, with many tunnels within the pyramid to create confusion for grave robbers. This is not true. The shafts of pyramids are quite simple, mostly leading directly to the tomb. The immense size of the pyramids attracted robbers to the wealth that lay inside which caused the tombs to be robbed relatively soon after the tomb was sealed in some cases.
Also, it is popularly thought that due to grave robbers, future kings were buried in the Valley of the Kings to help keep them hidden.
This is also false, as the pyramid construction continued for many dynasties, just on a smaller scale. Finally, the pyramid construction was stopped due to economic factors, not theft. The Luxor Temple is a huge ancient Egyptian temple complex located on the east bank of the River Nile in the city today known as Luxor ancient Thebes.
Luxor is thus unique among the main Egyptian temple complexes in having only two pharaohs leave their mark on its architectural structure. The pylon was decorated with scenes of Ramesses's military triumphs particularly the Battle of Qadesh ; later pharaohs, particularly those of the Nubian and Ethiopian dynasties, also recorded their victories there.
Through the pylon gateway leads into a peristyle courtyard, also built by Ramesses II. This area, and the pylon, were built at an oblique angle to the rest of the temple, presumably to accommodate the three pre-existing barque shrines located in the northwest corner. Friezes on the wall describe the stages in the Opet Festival, from sacrifices at Karnak at the top left, through Amun 's arrival at Luxor at the end of that wall, and concluding with his return on the opposite side.
The decorations were put in place by Tutankhamun: the boy pharaoh is depicted, but his names have been replaced with those of Horemheb. Beyond the colonnade is a peristyle courtyard, which also dates back to Amenhotep's original construction.
The best preserved columns are on the eastern side, where some traces of original color can be seen. The southern side of this courtyard is made up of a column hypostyle court i. The temple complex of Karnak is located on the banks of the Nile River some 2. It consists of four main parts, Precinct of Amon-Re , the Precinct of Montu , the Precinct of Mut and the Temple of Amenhotep IV dismantled , as well as a few smaller temples and sanctuaries located outside the enclosing walls of the four main parts, and several avenues of ram-headed sphinxes connecting the Precinct of Mut, the Precinct of Amon-Re and Luxor Temple.
This temple complex is particularly significant, for many rulers have added to it. However, notably every ruler of the New Kingdom added to it. The site covers over acres and consists of a series of pylons, leading into courtyards, halls, chapels, obelisks, and smaller temples.
The key difference between Karnak and most of the other temples and sites in Egypt is the length of time over which it was developed and used.
Construction work began in the 16th century BC, and was originally quite modest in size, but eventually, in the main precinct alone, as many as twenty temples and chapels would be constructed. Few of the individual features of Karnak are unique, but the size and number of those features are overwhelming.
One of the greatest temples in Egyptian history is that of Amun-Ra at Karnak. As with many other temples in Egypt, this one details the feats of the past including thousands of years of history detailed via inscriptions on many of the walls and columns found on site, often modified or completely erased and redone by following rulers , and honors the gods.
The temple of Amun-Re was constructed in three sections, the third being constructed by the later New Kingdom pharaohs. In canon with the traditional style of Egyptian architecture, many of the architectural features, such as the inner sanctum of the complex, were aligned with the sunset of the summer solstice.
One of the architectural features present at the site is the 5, sq m 50, sq ft hypostyle hall built during the Ramesside period. Among his many accomplishments, such as the expansion of Egypt's borders, he constructed a massive temple called the Ramesseum, located near Thebes , then the capital of the New Kingdom. The Ramesseum was a magnificent temple, complete with monumental statues to guard its entrance. The most impressive was a foot-tall statue of Ramses himself.
The temple features impressive reliefs, many detailing a number of Ramses' military victories, such as the Battle of Kadesh ca. Under the tenure of Amenhotep III workers constructed over buildings and monuments.
The site is approximately , square meters or 2,, square feet. The central area of the complex consisted in the Pharaoh's apartments that were made up of a number of rooms and courts, all of which were oriented around a columned banquet hall.
Accompanying the apartments, that presumably housed the royal cohort and foreign guests, was a large throne room connected to smaller chambers, for storage, waiting, and smaller audiences. The greater elements of this area of the complex are what have been come to be called the West Villas just west of the King's Palace , the North Palace and Village, and Temple.
The temple's external dimensions are approximately The lower court is almost square, whereas the upper terrace was rectangular in shape. The upper section of the court was paved with mud bricks and has a 4 m wide entrance to it from the lower part of the fore-court, connecting the base to the upper landing was a ramp enclosed by walls.
The temple proper might be seen as divided in to three distinct parts: central, north, and south. The central part is indicated by a small rectangular anteroom 6.
There is evidence the ceiling of this chamber was decorated with yellow stars on blue background, whereas the walls today show only the appearance of a white stucco over mud plaster. Supporting the ceiling are six columns arranged in two rows with east—west axis. Only small fragments of the column bases have survived, though they suggest the diameter of these columns to have been about 2.
The second hall is similar to the first, first its ceiling seems to have been decorated with similar if not identical patterns and images as the first. Second, in the same way the ceiling is supported by columns, four to be precise, ordered in two rows on the same axis as those of the first hall, with a 3 m wide space between them.
In hall two, at-least one of the rooms appears to have been dedicated to the cult of Maat, which suggests the other three in this area might have likewise served such a religious purpose. The southern part of the temple may be divided into two sections: western and southern. The western section consists of 6 rooms, whereas the southern area given its size In many of these rooms were found blue ceramic tiles inlaid with gold around their edge.
The temple itself seems to have been dedicated to the Egyptian deity Amun, given the number of bricks stamped with various inscriptions, such as "the temple of Amun in the house of Rejoicing" or "Nebmaarta in the Temple of Amun in the house of Rejoicing".
Overall the temple of Malakata shares many with other cult temples of the New Kingdom, with magnificent halls and religiously oriented rooms with many others more closely resemble store rooms. Fortifications within Ancient Egypt were built in times of conflict between rival principalities.
Guide to Ancient Egyptian Art
Number of records S T U. Dissoki, S. Sahaba, S. Badie, O. Hanafy, A. Kuhrt, eds. OIP 17
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The Middle Kingdom c. Edited by Matthew A. Mentuhotep II restored stability in BCE after launching an attack that met with little resistance. His subjects considered him to be divine or semi-divine, as suggested in a relief depicting the pharaoh receiving offerings. During the Middle Kingdom, relief and portrait sculpture captured subtle, individual details that reached new heights of technical perfection. Some of the finest examples of sculpture during this time was at the height of the empire under Pharaoh Senusret III.
The Art and Architecture of Middle Kingdom Egypt, c.2055-1650 BCE
Tuthankamen's famous Burial Mask c. Includes 11 kilograms of solid gold. A wonderful piece of precious metalwork from the New Kingdom. For a guide to later works, please see: History of Art Timeline.