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Persian Art
Through The Centuries

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Alexander and
The Seleucids

The Parthians

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After Alexander conquered the Persian Empire (331 BC), Iranian art underwent a revolution. Greeks and Iranians lived together in the same city, where mixed marriages became commonplace. Two profoundly different concepts of life and beauty thus came into confrontation with each other. On the one hand all interest focused on modeling the plasticity of the body and its gestures; while on the other, there was nothing but dryness and severity, a linear vision, rigidness, and frontality. Greco-Iranian art was the logical product of this encounter.

Section from Alexander's Sarcophagus

Relief from Alexander's Sarcophagus
Greeks and Persians hunting lions with Alexander the Great

The victors, represented by the Seleucid dynasty of Macedonian origin, replaced the old Oriental art by Hellenistic forms in which space and perspective, gesture, drapery and other devices were used to suggest movement or various emotions, however, some Oriental features still remained.


Persian Art Through The Centuries

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Persian History

Persian Art
Through The Centuries

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Persian History
Alexander the Great

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