31 December 2006

Who Were the Cycladic?

When I was in my younger and more impressionable years, I was thumbing through a book that might have been an encyclopedia. I stopped at a photograph not unlike the one accompanying this entry.

It took my breath away -- and was the beginning of my lifelong interest in ancient Greeks and Modern Art.

What is really bizarre about the whole thing is that no one knows who made these great works of art (the people are called Cycladic, after the islands called the Cyclades), the art was made thousands of years before the Modern Art movement appeared, and to this day still nearly nothing is known about the pieces themselves: were they funerary offerings, statues of gods, or children's toys?

Whatever they are, and whomever made them, they remain some of the most important creations by humans in the history of humanity.

An article about the discovery of more pieces is

More about the art and culture can be found
here and here.

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