Art Essay Sample
In the course of last week, I had the rare opportunity to visit the largest art museum in the United States, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. I was in awe of the many unique and interesting works of art in the museum’s collection. The works presented impressed me very much. Since the total amount of works represented in the museum is more than 2 million, they have been divided into seventeen curatorial departments. This division has made it possible for works with shared features to be grouped together. My visit to the Metropolitan Museum was one of the most enjoyable experiences I have ever had in my life. The Kneeling Statue of Hatshepsut impressed me exceptionally.
As much as many of the works were remarkable, I was particularly interested in works from Ancient Egypt. The culture of the people from ancient Egypt has always fascinated me. Thus, being able to view their art and hence the culture of man’s oldest civilization left me with feelings of contentment and happiness.
In tandem with my excitement and desire to explore the museum, I hurried towards the museum’s massive wing of 40 Egyptian galleries. There were many valuable pieces of art in the museum’s Egyptian collection. However, the piece that really caught my eye was the Kneeling Statue of Hatshepsut. According to Kleiner, the statue is made of red granite. Though many statues of Hatshepsut have been found, this particular one has minor damages compared to the rest. The figures details have been curved using a linear pattern for her garment and an outline of her face. She is kneeling while carrying a rounded pot like item in her hands. It has been done symmetrically. Therefore, the rounded bowls like items are estimated to be the same size, and so she can carry them in the same way.
The reason this artwork intrigued me is because of whom it represented, and her story as a female king is amazing. As I mentioned earlier, the statue was made up granite. It was not done by chance. The use of granite symbolized the greatest of Hatshepsut. It relates to the fact that granite exemplified a prestigious and prosperous dynasty. One detail that I had not pointed out was Hatshepsut’s statue shows her as a male king wearing a kilt, a false beard, and royal head gear. It is not quite clear if this headgear is the white crown of Upper Egypt or the names head cloth an issue that has proven contentious for many historians. The base of the statue is engraved “Maatkare”, which means “the one who gives Maat to Amun”. The term “Maat” means goddess of balance and justice. Therefore, it meant that Hatshepsut had a strong sense of balance and justice.
I found it interesting that there were several statues of this great ruler. I can only speculate and conclude that her people must have loved her lots to make more art and sculptures in her likeness. Therefore, the figure may have been created for people to show their devotion. In my view, the purpose of this work of art must have been to depict Hatshepsut’s greatness as a female pharaoh. It can be confirmed by the manner in which her image was captured in such a strong and glorious way.
In conclusion, the Metropolitan Museum of Art remains a rich source of human culture that goes back many centuries. We can learn about those who came before us by merely studying their culture through their artistic expressions. In the same way, those, who will come after us, will learn about us. My visit to this museum was truly enjoyable, and it gave me a chance to indulge one of my passions, Ancient Egyptian history.
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