The Iconography Of The Laurel Wreath

1312 WordsNov 3, 20166 Pages
The Iconography of the Laurel Wreath Historically, wreaths, particular in Ancient Greece, were used to symbolize glory, power and youthfulness. Wreaths, comprised of varying berries and branches, became a representation of a particular polis or an offering to a specific deity. Therefore, throughout ancient Greek art, wreaths are placed on subjects in pottery, paintings and sculpture. The gold wreath, simply titled Wreath, at the Getty Villa, is made up of two wires that fasten in the front with a simple hook and eye. The structure of this gold wreath derives from the form of real leaves worn in religious ceremonies and given as awards in athletic events. This paper seeks to explore the iconography and functions of wreaths in Ancient Greece. By analyzing the composition and content of the particular gold wreath at the Getty Villa, I wish to consider how iconography reveals how the object engaged with viewers and communicated specific messages. The gold wreath, simply titled Wreath, at the Getty Villa, is made up of two wires that fasten in the front with a simple hook and eye. These two wires have thinner stems decorated with laurel leaves and berries that were added by an anonymous goldsmith. The bottom half of the hollow wire showcase the broken ends of twigs. This detail showcases a naturalistic quality of this wreath. Moreover, the structure of gold wreaths derive from the form of real leaves worn in religious ceremonies and given as awards in athletic events. Because

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