Altar Of Zeus At Pergamon Analysis

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One of the most memorable and important pieces of architect from the Hellenistic Greek era would be the Altar of Zeus at Pergamon in western Turkey. The altar was commissioned in the first half of the second century (166- 156 BC) during the rule of King Eumenes II or Attalos II to commemorate territorial victories over Pontos and Bithynia. The Altar was also dedicated to Zeus and Athena in gratitude for their help in the war against the Galatians (aka: barbarians) that were threatening the Pergamane Empire from the east. The Altar of Zeus is very well known for its very grand design and also for it’s frieze, which wraps 370 feet around the base of the altar, depicting gigantomachy (the struggle between gods and the giants).
The statue as a whole is thought to have been designed by Phyromachos of Athens, the last of the greatest sculptors from Ancient Greece. The gigantomachy shows the Olympian gods fighting against the Giants; also know as the children of the goddess of Earth, Gaia. The frieze is known for its incredibly high relief on which the figures are barely restrained by the wall and for
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The gigantomachy frieze represents the full becoming of Hellenistic sculptures. All the statues/ friezes are chiastic and dramatic and full of tension, they are al carved in high relied with deep drilling that allowed the increase of naturalism because of the play of light and shadows. “Pergamon was to be an Athens in the East. Attalos' victory over the Gauls was to be regarded as a triumph of Greeks over barbarians like the Athenian triumph over the Persians. So the Altar of Zeus was the Parthenon of the Pergamenes; and the temple of Athena, which could not carry this symbolism, was yet given a resemblance to the Parthenon when the gateway was built, because a similar slanting view faced the spectator when he emerged from the Parthenon gateway on the Athenian
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