Art & Architecture

The Diffusion of Classical Art in Antiquity

From one of the world’s leading authorities on ancient Greek art, a groundbreaking account of how Greek images were understood and used by other ancient peoples, from Britain to China


30% off with code PUP30

Sale Price:
Oct 17, 2023
120 b/w illus.
Buy This

In this book, acclaimed archaeologist and art historian John Boardman explores Greek art as a foreign art transmitted to the non-Greeks of antiquity—peoples who weren’t necessarily able to judge the meaning of Greek art and who may have regarded the Greeks themselves with great hostility. Boardman examines how and why the arts of the classical world traveled and to what effect, from Britain to China, from roughly the eighth century BCE to the early centuries CE. In some places, such as Italy, Greek images were overwhelmingly successful. In Egypt, the Celtic world, the eastern steppes, and other regions with strong local traditions, they were never effectively assimilated. And in cultures where there was a subtler blend of influences, notably in the Buddhist east, classical images served as a catalyst to the generation of new styles. Along the way, Boardman demonstrates that looking at Greek art from the outside provides a wealth of new insights into Greek art itself, and he raises important questions about how images in general are copied and reinterpreted.