Saturday, October 17, 2015

Ancient Etruscan painting

Etruscan tomb painting spans nearly five hundred years, from the second quarter of the seventh century to the turn from the third to the second century BC.

It was largely decorative and sepulchral in motive, and was employed in the painting of tombs, and upon vases and other objects placed in the tombs. It had a native way of expressing itself, which at first was neither Greek nor Oriental, and yet a reminder of both.

Technically it was not well done. Ancient paintings ar Ardea, in Etruria and at Lanuvium still retained, in the time of Pliny all their primitive freshness. According to Pliny, paintings of a still earlier date were to be seen at Caere, another Etruscan city. Before 500 B.C. it was almost childish in the drawing. After that date the figures were better, though short and squat. Those on the vases usually show outline drawing filled in with dull browns and yellows.

Etruscan tomb painting, especially the painted hypogea of the coastal metropolis Tarquinia are unquestionably among the most important and expressive remains of Etruscan culture and they have excited the imaginations of experts and other Etruscan enthusiast over the centuries.

Finally there was a mingling of Etruscan with Greek elements, and an imitation of Greek methods. It was at best a hybrid art, but of some importance from an arch├Žological point of view.
Ancient Etruscan painting

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