High Classical





High Classical

High Classism was a period of Greek art that was associated with the creation of masterpieces according to art historians. The period was referred to as such because of the standard of artistic refinement and unsurpassed artistic excellence (Kousser). The Greeks considered art as an expression of Athenian values and civic pride. They relied on it to bolster the status of Athens as the capital of an empire.

High Classical Works

Parthenon was the largest building of the Acropolis and was a dedication to the patron deity of Athens by the name Athena. The building was constructed at the peak of a hill and its elevation on a pedestal augment the display of its imposing width and depth. The construction was regarded as high classical through the use of the best white marbles and the works of distinguished architects, sculptors, and artists that worked together to execute the vision. Sculptures created by Peidias conveyed the notion that the Greek civilization was progressive and powerful than all the states around it.

The spear bearer was a sculpture created by Polykleitos of Argos that adhered to the standards of ideal temple design (Palagia). He used the ideal features of a man including smooth skin, symmetry and body proportions considered model and combined them into one model of physical faultlessness. The mathematical proportions used by Polykleitos is what makes this amazing piece a high classic. He applied system ratios and measurements to define ideal proportions. These proportions possibly guide the relationship between body parts. The sculpture explored sizes and affiliations between bearing weight and a central axis. The result is an animatedly balanced body posture with all features of a High classical upright figure sculpture.

Works Cited

Kousser, Rachel. “Adapting Greek Art.” A Companion to Roman Art 97 (2015): 114.

Palagia, Olga. “Greek sculpture, Archaic, Classical & Hellenistic: new finds & developments 2005–2015.” Archaeological Reports 61 (2015): 104-114.