The art piece I picked was the statue of Horus

The art piece I picked was the statue of Horus. The name Horus stems from ancient Egypt language of the word “hr” or (her) which meant “above” or “upon”. He has been worshiped since the Pre-dynastic period (Britannica,2018). The art piece was located at the Vincent Price Art Museum by East L.A College. The exhibition presented Egyptian art pieces that focused on myth and funerary practices. This specific peace would be an object found inside a tomb in order to demonstrate insight on the person that is being buried. Egyptians erected countless monuments and statues in honor of their gods and kings whom they believed were divine and would serve as mediators to the gods. Horus is an Egyptian religion sky god that symbolizes light and goodness. He was considered to be the god of the afterlife, in Egypt the afterlife was considered to be more significant in comparison to actual life because ancient Egyptians respected death greatly(Gardner, 2009). The mythology behind Horus states that before he was born his father Osiris died at the hands of his own brother Set. Horus swore to avenge his father’s death and fought his uncle many times. One of the versions of the story states that his uncle Set blinded his left eye but the gods healed it and Horus managed to eventually kill his uncle and be named ruler of Egypt. His restored eye or “widget” became a symbol of protection in Egypt and is used to the tell his story and to explain the changing phases of the moon (Britannica,2018).
The beginning of the Bronze Age started in Mesopotamia where the Sumer civilization existed and where a society that developed early writing system (Gardner, 2009). Because war and trade where big profitable markets at the time, it paved the way for a new technique called bronze casting when what had previously dominated the sculpting world where artist who worked with hard stone or clay. Bronze sculptures where to represent deities and where specifically designed to be worshiped in a temple or place in a tomb for protection. The most expensive pieces where also inlaid with gold or silver in order to create a contrast to highlight the eyes or to provide a simple detail in the hair or jewelry. Bronze was also ideal when it came to casting statues because it was a superior metal that endured its liquid state form for longer periods of time while being poured into a mould. This allowed the artist to deliver stronger pieces and it is a method that is still used today (, 2018). According to the article “Collecting Guide: Ancient Egyptian Bronzes” it states that “A model was first made in wax, which was then encased in clay and exposed to heat in order to melt the wax and bake the clay. The resulting mould would be filled with molten bronze, and once cooled the clay would be smashed to reveal the solid sculpture inside” (, 2018).
In recent chapters that we have studies we have not come across a piece like this. The most comparison available was the King Narmer Palette from Hierakonpolis and this comparison is only being made simply because of the story that is attached to the slate. It is Predynastic ranging from 3000-2920 BCE and the slate is 2’1″ in height and is one of the earliest surviving labeled pieces of work. The engravings depict the king and are able to identify him by his large presence on the center of the pallet. He is depicted as a living Horus being that is he a falcon with one human arm. He is shown wearing the crown of Upper Egypt and slaying a captured enemy as his worshipers look on. On the opposite side of the palette you see the king wearing the crown of Lower Egypt viewing his beheaded enemy bodies with the symbolization of two inter winded animals necks that may state the unification of the two kingdoms (, 2018). The Paleter it self is carved out of a single piece of flat, soft dark gay/green siltstone. As stated in Chapter 3 “…the palette is important not only as a document making the transient from prehistoric to historic period in ancient Egypt but also as a kind of early blueprint of the formula for figure representation that characterized most Egyptian art”(Gardner, 2009). The Horus statue that was chosen for this paper was made out of bronze but its color has a similar relation to King Narmer’s palette. It is as if it was made to look like it was carved out of a green siltstone although that could be due to the fact that it’s been kept to be preserved and we also don’t know how bronze ages. The statue itself looks as though it was molded by someone who had a great deal of talent for details. The scales and claws on the falcon have symmetrical detail with realism. It is possible that he could have had a live animal model in order to achieve such a realistic claw. The claw it self is molded to look strong, as if the falcon is perched and ready to fly. Its beak and eyes are smooth and the falcons face is stern, the same way King Tutankhamun looks at all of his worshipers. Its as if that look was the face of Egypt, very unshaken or moved by any troubles. This is definitely provincial work done by an artist with admirable skill and who cared greatly about this piece and the importance behind it. The exhibit was designed in a way the viewer enters the room containing a tomb with a mummified person. The room next door holds the artifacts and a video explaining mummification. This lead me to believe that maybe this person was important enough to be considered a god in the after life and this was an artifact that was found in the tomb with them. Sadly as twentieth century viewer I dont have the connections to it aside from a macabra curiosity. My fascination to investigate this piece was merely because there is a documentary story behind the symbol of the Horus.