Styles & Periods

Styles & Periods

Near Eastern Art

Where nomadic artists of the Paleolithic periods invented representation in the form of fertility figures and animal paintings, the Sumerians codified these symbols into the nature gods who served as organizing principles for their society. Predating the Egyptian pyramids, Mesopotamian temples are characterized by ziggurats (stepped platforms with sloped ramps). Many of the roots of Western civilization sprang up from the fertile river valley of the fourth millennium B.C.E. in Mesopotamia. The ancient Sumerians used the wheel and the plow, developed the earliest known script, and may well have developed the world's first formal religion; their imprint on our artistic traditions, and the imprint of the Assyrians and Persians, is no less profound. In Sumerian statuary, exaggerated eyes suggest awe of the divine, and humans are typically depicted with hands folded in prayer or holding goblets used in rituals. While the composite, rather than optical, approach continued to be the traditional mode, Babylonian artists experimented with techniques, such as foreshortening and tiered landscaping. Animals are composite as well; Lamassu, the winged human-headed bull, is one such example. In the art of the Hittites, Elamites, and Assyrians, as well as the Sumerians and Babylonians, art serves in a narrative capacity, often to catalogue in great detail the exploits of the leaders of this politically turbulent area.


Feeling inspired? Try out these fine products…

From $7.16

How To Series: Oil & Acrylic

by Walter Foster

Learn to paint step-by-step.

Up to 30% Off

Colored Pencil Pads

by Koh-I-Noor

Easy to layer and burnish your Colored Pencil Masterpiece
New Arrival

Up to 43% Off

Finest Stretched Cotton Canvas

by Discovery

Good quality canvas at a great price

Up to 60% Off

Lyptus Dulce Easel

by Jack Richeson

Attractive hardwood
On Sale

From $2.47

Graphite Drawing Pencil Sets

by Pacific Arc

Finally, the pencil barrel color indicates the lead!

From $1.70

Short Colored Pencils

by Crayola

Bold colors, strong lead.
Latest Product Reviews
I discovered polymer clay over 30 years ago in Berlin, Germany, when I was stationed there - US Army. Once I returned home to the US, I hunted down every form of this remarkable clay that could be found here in the US and have found Sculpey PREMO to be my overall favorite in all of the 30-plus years I've worked with it!
- C. James in Bridge City, TX
This product is as stated and works wonderfully for ink blending.
- Felicia S in DC
I have been ordering blank greeting cards for 15 years. Great price, quality paper
- barbara fisher in phila,pa
Free Download for Kids

Download free coloring book pages Download FREE coloring
book pages to color at
home or school.

View Pages »