Augustus 's Influence On Art And Architecture

1930 Words Jan 27th, 2015 8 Pages
Introduction:
In 27 BC Augustus began his political career with a “new policy which embodied a national and Roman spirit” (Galinksy, 1996, 225) and “represented new heights in creativity and sophistication” (Galinksy, 1996, 225). Augustus created a new political propaganda campaign that used art and architecture to promote and enhance his regime. The most fundamental message can be regarded as to establish the legitimacy of his rule and to portray him as the natural successor of Rome, as this is consistently presented throughout the visual programme. Yet factors such as the restoration of the Republic, reviving the old religion, nationalism and militaristic triumph can also be seen to be communicated prominently through art and architecture.

Legitimacy of Augustan Rule:
The art and architecture in the Augustan regime fundamentally reflected the new order and glorified the position and power of Augustus. Initially, at the beginning of his political career, Augustus wished to portray himself appropriately, therefore devised a new image as the first leader of the restored Republic. The academics Walker and Burnett comment that this plan included the melting down of eighty silver statues of Augustus, as the metal was “considered inappropriate for images of living persons and should be reserved for gods” (Walker and Burnett, 1981, 17); the silver was then offered to the Temple of Apollo. Nevertheless, Augustus’ intention to limit the use of his image can appear to be…
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