CDF101 History of design and art

Art is the quality of production and expression in accordance to principles of aesthetics. It is widely known in different fields and genres such as painting, sculpture, music, drawing, literature, and even architecture. But as we all know, art started a very long time ago, back in the days of the Egyptian empire to the reign of the Greeks and the Romans. They used art to express themselves and to portray their way of living during their time.

In the ancient Egypt, art was highly stylized and symbolic. It is mostly found in their ancient tombs and monuments. Most of it depicts thedevelopment of their civilization with emphasis on life after deathand the preservation of knowledge of the past.


This picture is a modernized example of an ancient Egyptian art.  Just by looking at it, it tells us about the abundant life of a King of Egypt. Some symbolists tried to decipher their art to learn more about their archaic civilization.

During the “Golden Age” of ancient Greece, sculptures and vase-painting prevailed and became a huge part of their lifestyle.  In relation with ancient Egyptian art, they also try to convey their way of living through art.

This one is an example of a Greek vessel with an intricate repeated angular pattern which became known as “Geometric” art. The Greeks used this art to depict their activities, particularly the story of their ancient funeral.image

The Roman art, which is somehow a continuation of the Greek art, is more on sculptures than paintings. Though most of their works are copied from the artistic works of the Greeks during the Hellenistic period, they tried to use real human figures to depict the ancient Roman culture.

This is the picture of the famous “Laocoön” sculpture. Unlike the Egyptian art, this one does not need deciphering. It just needs observation and imagination to know the people and how they expressed themselves through art.






These ancient arts not only provide us with vital information on their edification, but it also tells us about their experiences of their daily lives. Man, during the ancient period until now, tried to reflect their environment through art.

Through these arts, or artistically made crafts, we can clearly see how ancient people have the desire to explain his environment. Through their art, it gives us knowledge of history and cultural traditions. And with this knowledge, we now understand man and development, struggles and advances in life. Just like Aristotle’s philosophy “art is a mirror of reality”, which means that through studying art we can learn about the cultural progress of the ancient people.  Arts disseminate to us the right values and how we can relate with other people. We learn to appreciate man’s ideas of human potential, by this I meant the experiences which can only be lived and learned. As I have said before, art is a means of expression. It is a medium for communicating an idea, an emotion, to make an impression of life and reality. These ancient Egyptian art, classical Greek and Roman art are just some of the major creative craftsmanship that affected our culture and knowledge until today in our modern period.