Cyprus Arts

Cyprus Arts

Bronze age

The culturally significant Bronze Age of Cyprus is divided into three main periods: early (2300–2000 BC), middle (2000–1600 BC) and late (1600–1050 BC) Bronze Age. The early Bronze Age is represented by sites (especially graves with additions), among other things. known in Vunus, Kurion, Phaneromeni (today Episcopi) and Philia with its jugs. The ceramics provided with incised patterns (crest decoration) and plastic decoration (red polished goods) show a great wealth of shapes. The imported goods included Syrian ceramics, Egyptian alabaster vessels and Minoan kamares vases. Clay models were found in Vunus, a double team of plows with oxen and a round cult room in which, in addition to human figures, there are bulls, bull masks and snakes (Nicosia, Cyprus Museum). Board-shaped idols were worshiped in the early and middle Bronze Age. In the middle Bronze Age, probably from 1650 BC onwards, Mighty fortifications built (remains at Krini southwest of the mountain fortress Sankt Hilarion; Hagios Sozomenos; Nitovikla), signs of a period of unrest (internal feuds and / or the Hyksos).

In ceramics (1650–1200 BC), according to a2zdirectory, painting on a white background (“white slip”) and polished red ware with white rings (“base ring ware”) predominate. 1600-1550 BC In Eastern Cyprus, goods influenced by the Palestinian territories were also produced. In the late Bronze Age, around 1550 BC, A period of economic and cultural prosperity (metal production), the 1400–1200 BC. Reached its peak, especially in the cities of Enkomi (secular and sacred architecture), Kition (including Astart temple and rich chamber tombs) and Palaipaphos (Aphrodite shrine).

Outstanding works of goldsmithing, ivory carving, silver processing, Toreutik and vase painting were created. The Mycenaean style vases of the 14th and 13th centuries BC According to today’s estimates, they were imported. In Kition, the main sanctuary was directly connected to the metalworking workshops. A uniform horizon of destruction at different sites (shortly before 1200 BC; e.g. Amathus) is probably due to the invasion of the sea peoples. The cities were soon rebuilt (Enkomi, Kition) and fortified. The forerunner settlement of Kurion was also built during this time; A gold scepter (11th century BC) comes from one of the graves. In Enkomi were from the early 12th century BC. BC bronze statuettes found, a “horn god” and a “bar god” standing on copper bars (also with a horn cap). According to the type and abundance of the finds, it was around 1100 BC. Chr. Increased waves of immigration from Achaeans. As early as 1125 BC White-ground ceramics (“proto white ware”) occurring in Cyprus are ascribed to the first groups of them (from Crete), because they are the forerunners of the painted white-ground vases (“white painted ware”) that were widespread in the Iron Age and later. Towards the end of the late Bronze Age (around 1050 BC) many cities were probably destroyed by earthquakes.

Iron age

In the artistically less tangible Iron Age (1050–600 BC), Salamis and Kition (focus of the Phoenician trading establishments) experienced from the 9th century BC at the latest. A heyday that lasted in the 8th and 7th centuries BC. Lasted and remained under Assyrian rule (from 709 BC).

Greek and Roman antiquity

The genre of painted white vases in the »free field style«, produced in southern and eastern Cyprus, dates from the archaic art epoch (750–499 / 498 BC); the freely set motifs (birds, rosettes, people) are evidently influenced by Phoenician and Syrian textiles. In other workshops, high-quality specimens of the “white painted ware” and the “black on red ware” were made.

Archaic royal tombs with rich gifts were discovered near Salamis, over 2,000 archaic votive terracottas (625–500 BC) in Hagia Irini, weapons consecrations in Idalion, a royal necropolis, a city complex and sanctuaries (Astarte shrine) with large limestone sculptures (middle 7th century) in Tamassos, Phoenician Century BC). The limestone and terracotta sculptures of the 6th – 5th centuries are clearly influenced by Greek influences. Century BC From the Apollon sanctuary of Idalion. The high-altitude palace of Vuni from the classical period of Cyprus (475-325 BC) is probably a Persian satrap’s palace. In the Hellenistic (332–58 BC) and Roman times (58 BC – 395 AD), the art and culture of Cyprus played a part in the development of the Mediterranean region. The Hellenistic necropolis of Neapaphos and (as a well-known single work) Aphrodite von Soloi (1st century BC), Roman the monumental architecture in Salamis, Kurion and Soloi, preserved in impressive remains. Magnificent Roman floor mosaics from the 4th to 6th centuries. Century AD with pagan or early Christian themes are preserved in villas and church ruins (e.g. on the Karpasia peninsula, in Kurion and Neapaphos), and in the Panhagia Angeloktistos in Kiti there is also an apse mosaic (6th century).

Middle Ages and Modern Times

Since the end of the 10th century AD, a number of Byzantine mountain festivals (Hilarion, Kyrenia, Kantara) emerged. The preserved small medieval churches, especially in Troodos, preserve major works of Byzantine wall paintings, including the oldest Byzantine frescoes that have survived, by Asinu (1105-06) and – as an art-historical highlight – the frescoes in the Komnenen style in the church of Lagudera, dated 1192. The frescoed Byzantine churches declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO also include those at Kakopetria, those north of Paphos (Hagios Neophytos) and those in Kalopanagiotis.

A second heyday (post-Byzantine wall painting) began at the end of the 15th century under the Venetians. The high Gothic architecture experienced in the 13th / 14th. Century a bloom; the mostly French (“Franconian”) architects built a. the cathedral Hagia Sophia in Nicosia (1209-1326), Hagios Nikolaos in Famagusta (1298-1326), the Bellapais monastery east of Kyrenia (13th and 14th centuries), the upper castle of Hilarion (1391) and the “Royal Chapel” von Pyrga (1421) with coat of arms of the Lusignan.

The former residential tower (1454) of the Johanniterburg (called Kolossi) near Limassol has been preserved from the 15th century, as is the hall of their sugar factory, which a Turkish pasha had restored in 1591. The Venetians left behind mighty fortifications (Cyrene, Nicosia, Famagusta), which they had built against the Turks from 1544. The Turks continued to use these and Crusader fortresses in part, converted churches into mosques, built new ones as well as baths, chans and houses; Particularly well-known are an aqueduct (near Larnaka) and the grave mosque Hala Sultan Tekke (1816) on the salt lake of Larnaka.

Cyprus Arts

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