The Characteristics Of The Ancient Bronze Essay

1301 Words Oct 1st, 2015 6 Pages
In the urban pockets of China, bronze was often employed with ritual vessels, "containers for wine, water, and food, with which the king and nobles performed sacrifices to ancestors and other spirits on whom the well-being of the realm depended." These pieces were in high demand by feudal dignitaries starting in the Shang period. The you vessel served the purpose of holding wine for ritual ceremonies, and the hu especially acted as "a vessel for diluting wine with water." While the you vessel was most frequently used during the late Shang to early Western Zhou territory, the hu vessel was popular in the Eastern Zhou territory. A shift occurs between these two vessels, as the Shang dynasty represented an agricultural-hunting society, and the Zhou dynasty expressed an urban agricultural state. Viewers can determine that these two pieces were common in their era through a comparison between their decorations, the techniques the artists employed, and the pieces ' overall expressive qualities. The you ritual wine vessel was common for its time period as it "embodies the principal elements that make up the Shang bronze style--the combination of many animals in one form, the metamorphosis of one animal into another, the desire to cover the whole vessel with a complex design, and the tendency toward powerful, sculptural forms." Since, life revolved around questions of how people will find food to sustain themselves, one can see why the artist incorporated so many animal…

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