Ancient Greek Art
Southeastern Oklahoma State University
The arts of ancient Greece have exercised an
enormous influence on the culture of many countries
all over the world, particularly in the areas of
sculpture and architecture.
Forms of art developed at different speeds in
different parts of the Greek world, and as in any age
some artists worked in more innovative styles than
In this presentation, we will look at Greek pottery,
architecture, and paintings.
The range of colors which
could be used on pots was
restricted by the technology
of firing: black, white, red,
and yellow were the most
In the three earlier periods,
the pots were left their
natural light color, and were
decorated with slip that
turned black in the kiln.
Architecture Most of our knowledge of Greek
architecture comes from the few
surviving buildings of the
Classical, Hellenistic and Roman
periods (since Roman
architecture heavily copied
Greek), and from late written
sources such as Vitruvius (1st
This means that there is a strong
bias towards temples, the only
buildings which survive in any
The most respected form of art, according to authors like Pliny
or Pausanias, were individual, mobile paintings on wooden
boards, technically described as panel paintings.
The techniques used were encaustic (wax) painting and tempera.
Well into the 19th century, the classical tradition
derived from Greece dominated the art of the
Strong local traditions, conservative in character, and
the requirements of local cults, enable historians to
locate the origins even of displaced works of art.
Questions & Answers
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