See studies by C. Dovmas (1981) and P. Getz-Preziosi (1987).
Cycladic art is the art and sculpture of the ancient Cycladic civilization, existing in the islands of the Aegean Sea from 3300 - 2000 BCE. Art mainly manifested itself in the form of marble idols, often used as offerings to the dead. Idols possessed a flat, geometric quality, giving them a striking resemblance to today's modern art. A majority of the figuirines are female, depicted nude, and with arms folded across the stomach. It is unknown whether these idols depict a goddess, or merely Cycladic women.
The best-known art of this period are the Marble Idols, which had been refined since Neolithic times. These marbles are seen scattered around the Aegean, suggesting that these figures were popular amongst the people of Crete and Mainland Greece (Doumas 81). Perhaps the most famous of these Marble Idols are musicians: one a harp-player the other a pipe-player (Higgins 61). Dating to approximately 2500 B.C.E., these musicians are sometimes considered “the earliest extant musicians from the Aegean” (Higgins 60).
The local clay proved difficult for artists to work with, and the pottery, plates, and vases of this period are seldom above mediocre (Higgins 53). Of some importance are the so-called ‘frying pans’, which emerged on the island of Syros during the EC II phase. Most scholars believe that these ‘frying pans’ were not used for cooking, but perhaps as fertility charms or mirrors (Higgins 54).
Higgins, Reynold (1967). Minoan and Mycenaean Art. Thames and Hudson.
Hood, Sinclair (1978). The Arts in Prehistoric Greece. Penguin Books.
The Getty Kouros Colloquium: The J. Paul Getty Museum & Nicholas P. Goulandris Foundation, Museum of Cycladic Art, Athens. (book reviews)
Jun 01, 1994; From one replica of ancient Greek skill and craft to what may eventually prove to be another. In the aftermath of an intense yet...