The Pantheon (Rome)
, 118-125 AD. Hadrianic structure, dedicated to M. Agrippa. Influential
architectural design, reveals full potential of concrete, concrete cylinder covered by a huge
hemispherical dome, oculus is only light source, weight was lessened through coffers, gives
sense in how magnificent roman sculptures can be.
Arch of Septimius Severus (Rome)
, 203 AD.
Commemorate Parthain victory. In Forum
Romanum across from Augustus’ arch. Location connected the Severan dynasty with the founder
of the Roman Empire. Reliefs depict Roman soldiers escorting Parthian prisoners. Tradition of
imperially commissioned Triumphal arches, BUT the relief panels look like excerpts from the
spiral frieze of the Column of Trajan and on the Column of Marcus Aurelius. Depict episodes
from Parthian war. The style of the narrative format was arguably much better suited to panel
reliefs than to spiral friezes because the entire narrative could be read from a single vantage
Reliefs from the Arch of Septimius Severus (Lepcis Magna),
203 AD. Covered in reliefs.
Concordia Augustorum Relief
: has Caracalla and Severus shaking hands in front of Geta,
showing the sharing of that honor of being co-consul. Has triad composition with a central
frontal figure (key features of Late Antique style). Seen well in
Chariot Procession Relief:
homecoming of Severus family in 203. 3 people in chariot, others walk. Compare with earlier
depictions of triumphal processions. No sense of forward motion, stillness. All 3 face the viewer,
other stuff move but they don’t, second row figures have no connection with the ground and are
elevated aboe the heads of those in the first row tso that they can be seen more clearly, frontal
and floating figures were new to Roman art. (non-classical, late antique elements).
The Porphyrin Portraits of the Tetrarchs (Venice)
. 305 Ad, from Constantinople, Stocky bodies,
cubical heads, no trade of the grace or contrapposto of the Early and High Empire. Very Late
Antique: abstract, drapery is schematic, shapeless bodies, emotionless faces, differentiated only
by the beard, Tetrachs were paired, wear simple stiff hat that Diocletian introduced, used to have
a jewel in the hats as ornamental, has a sword in left hand and embrace eachother with right
hand. Emperors lose sense of individuality in the tetrarchy.
Development of the portrait
293: Diocletian divided Roman empire into two parts, Eastern and Western. Each part was ruled
by a senior emperor and a junior emperor. “Tetrarchy” worked well as long as the founder of the