The collections at Loggia explore select areas of study in art and art history, architecture and design, the decorative arts, industrial design, and classical studies such as Greek, Roman, and Celtic mythology.

Gardner's Art Through the Ages

This book is the classic reference for the study of art. It features a history of artists and their works, as well as lucid and engaging descriptions of the styles and periods of art history. Highly recommended for both students and scholars.








 

 








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Aphrodite in Art (Through the Ages)

In ancient art, one of the more intriguing images of the goddess Aphrodite is a work of sculpture known by the imposing title of the Ludovisi Throne. Scholars generally agree that the image depicts the birth of Aphrodite from the sea - the goddess of Love and Beauty is being helped to rise by a pair of females in silhouette. If the relief does indeed represent the birth of Aphrodite (there are other possible interpretations), then we have an early scene of the goddess emerging into the world.

A point about the piece - the artist has skillfully rendered the diaphanous folds of the wet garment that is draped around Aphrodite. This style of portraying sheer, wet fabric in relief will become quite popular in ancient Greek sculpture. Particularly in statues of Aphrodite...

Although the Ludovisi Throne may be an early representation of the birth of Aphrodite, the goddess continued to be an enormously compelling subject for artists. Greek sculptors especially lavished attention on their images of Aphrodite. The Greeks were followed closely by Roman artisans, who also delighted in portraying her in an array of beguiling scenes.

But one of the most consistently intriguing aspects of the myth of Aphrodite was indeed her birth from the water. Perhaps the most famous work based on this theme is Sandro Botticelli's lyrical Birth of Venus (remember that Venus is the Roman version of Aphrodite's name). Created in the early Renaissance, this painting captures the goddess of Love so beautifully that is has become a model for artists through the centuries.

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