Roman Art and Second Samnite War

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Roman art mentioned by Ancient Rome (n.d.), discusses the influence of Roman art and how it came from the Greeks and Etruscans artists including mosaics which were used to decorate and was inspired by Roman activities like sport and hunting. Pottery was important in their daily living, used for cooking and decoration. I will be discussing the purposes of sculptures and painting and their purpose in Ancient Rome (para. 1).

Roman sculptures were constantly evolving as was the culture in ancient Rome and according to Ancient Rome (n.d.), the Roman elite was initially sculpted in a way that was seen as delicate, this style changed showing more harsh lines, facial expression, having different tones, realistic eyes, depicting a life-like piece of art. The artist created this style to show how the elite had power, life experience and was interpreted as having the knowledge to make them seem more important than they may have been. 

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These sculptures were made of different materials and today, only those that were made out of marble exit, the other material was melted down as demand for those materials grew or became more valuable. These sculptures throughout the empire grew in popularity, immortalizing the gods, emperors and elite (paras. 7-8). According to Ancient Rome (n.d.), ‘towards the middle of the first century AD, Roman art began to become more realistic with the emphasis being put on optical effects and facial features’ (para. 7).

Roman painting differed from sculptures, the inspiration for these paintings were as Ancient Rome (n.d.) explains it, triumphal paintings become popular in the third century BC depicting military victories as well as decorative maps to show ‘to show the major locations of a particular campaign. These paintings would be surrounded by gold and ivory frames (Ancient Rome, n.d., para. 5). One of the oldest paintings found was a battle scene depicting the famous four enlarged segments of the Second Samnite War (paras. 4-6). These paintings were painted for decorative purposes and could be found in temples, houses and public buildings, and were painted in such splendour with the purpose of covering the entire wall.

Without these sculptures and painting, we would not have known about Roman history, even though the writings explains what we know today. Apart from paintings been used to show the wealth of a person owning it, it showed many periods in history, unlike the sculptures that showed the elite and how the sculptures changed over time to illustrate the elite, gods and emperors.

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