Official 11 Passage 1


Ancient Egyptian Sculpture


The word "depicts" in the passage is closest in meaning to

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正确答案: D

我的笔记 编辑笔记

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  • In order to understand ancient Egyptian art, it is vital to know as much as possible of the elite Egyptians' view of the world and the functions and contexts of the art produced for them. Without this knowledge we can appreciate only the formal content of Egyptian art, and we will fail to understand why it was produced or the concepts that shaped it and caused it to adopt its distinctive forms. In fact, a lack of understanding concerning the purposes of Egyptian art has often led it to be compared unfavorably with the art of other cultures: Why did the Egyptians not develop sculpture in which the body turned and twisted through space like classical Greek statuary? Why do the artists seem to get left and right confused? And why did they not discover the geometric perspective as European artists did in the Renaissance? The answer to such questions has nothing to do with a lack of skill or imagination on the part of Egyptian artists and everything to do with the purposes for which they were producing their art.

    The majority of three-dimensional representations, whether standing, seated, or kneeling, exhibit what is called frontality: they face straight ahead, neither twisting nor turning. When such statues are viewed in isolation, out of their original context and without knowledge of their function, it is easy to criticize them for their rigid attitudes that remained unchanged for three thousand years. Frontality is, however, directly related to the functions of Egyptian statuary and the contexts in which the statues were set up. Statues were created not for their decorative effect but to play a primary role in the cults of the gods, the king, and the dead. They were designed to be put in places where these beings could manifest themselves in order to be the recipients of ritual actions. Thus it made sense to show the statue looking ahead at what was happening in front of it, so that the living performer of the ritual could interact with the divine or deceased recipient. Very often such statues were enclosed in rectangular shrines or wall niches whose only opening was at the front, making it natural for the statue to display frontality. Other statues were designed to be placed within an architectural setting, for instance, in front of the monumental entrance gateways to temples known as pylons, or in pillared courts, where they would be placed against or between pillars: their frontality worked perfectly within the architectural context.

    Statues were normally made of stone, wood, or metal. Stone statues were worked from single rectangular blocks of material and retained the compactness of the original shape. The stone between the arms and the body and between the legs in standing figures or the legs and the seat in seated ones was not normally cut away. From a practical aspect this protected the figures against breakage and psychologically gives the images a sense of strength and power, usually enhanced by a supporting back pillar. By contrast, wooden statues were carved from several pieces of wood that were pegged together to form the finished work, and metal statues were either made by wrapping sheet metal around a wooden core or cast by the lost wax process. The arms could be held away from the body and carry separate items in their hands; there is no back pillar. The effect is altogether lighter and freer than that achieved in stone, but because both perform the same function, formal wooden and metal statues still display frontality.

    Apart from statues representing deities, kings, and named members of the elite that can be called formal, there is another group of three-dimensional representations that depicts generic figures, frequently servants, from the nonelite population. The function of these is quite different. Many are made to be put in the tombs of the elite in order to serve the tomb owners in the afterlife. Unlike formal statues that are limited to static poses of standing, sitting, and kneeling, these figures depict a wide range of actions, such as grinding grain, baking bread, producing pots, and making music, and they are shown in appropriate poses, bending and squatting as they carry out their tasks.

  • 要想深入解读古埃及艺术,极为重要的一点是要尽可能多地了解其精英阶层的世界观以及当时艺术创造的功能和背景。若是没有这些认识,我们只能窥探到古埃及艺术的皮毛而无法理解它们创造出来的原因和秉持的理念,也无法得知其采用独特艺术形式的原因。事实上,正是因为人们缺乏对这些根本意义的了解,让古埃及文化艺术在与其他艺术进行对比时往往遭到质疑:为什么古埃及的雕塑作品不像古希腊的经典作品那样,有空间上的弯曲和旋转?为什么那些艺术家似乎都左右不分?又是为什么,在那些艺术作品里,完全没有体现过文艺复兴时期欧洲艺术家普遍采用的几何透视 ?然而,这些问题的答案完全不能说明古埃及的艺术家技艺不佳或者缺乏想象力,而恰恰体现了他们创造这些艺术的意义所在。

    大部分三维立体的雕像,无论是站着、坐着抑或是跪着的,都体现出一种称为 “正面描绘”的手法:它们往往直面前方,既不弯曲,也不翻转。如果脱离对其原始情境的了解和功能作用的认识,孤立地去观看,你将会对它们三千年不变的僵硬姿态发出责难。然而事实上,这种“正面描绘”的展示手法与古埃及雕塑的功能和创造背景有着密切的联系。当时,创造雕塑不仅仅是用来作为装饰,更重要的是应用于对神灵、国王和逝者的祭祀典礼上。它们被放置在显要位置,是为了受礼者的仪式活动。从而,那些接受膜拜的神灵和人物得以显现,能够更直接地观看到整个仪式的表演,并能与现场表演者互通心灵,传达神意。这些雕塑通常被放置在只有正面开口的矩形神龛或者壁龛中,这样也使得这些作品必须通过正面展现。有些雕塑也被放置在建筑系列中,比如说,塔门(神殿通道入口的纪念碑)的正前方,和支柱结构法庭中的支柱对面或者两柱之间——正是这种正面展示的方式让这些雕塑与周围的建筑环境相得益彰。



    几何透视法产成与数学原理,是把几何透视运用到绘画艺术表现之中,是科学与艺术相结合的技法。它主要借助于远大近小的透视现象表现物体的立体感。 平行透视当立方体的六个面中,有一个面与画者的位置呈平行状态时,画者所看到的是它面产生的透视变化。
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    A选项 想象;

    B选项 分类;

    C选项 提升;

    D选项 描绘,正确。