Hellenistic period, 323-30 B.C.  Marble

    Marble from Paros in the Aegean Sea was chosen for sculpting the ideal human figure. The pose in which the left hand holds her garment, which covers her from the hips down, symbolizes this goddess, who was born of the sea foam. In the Hellenistic period in which this statue of Venus was created, Alexander the Great’s expeditions to the east produced a blending of Greek and Oriental culture and a new aesthetic. Statues, which had decorated temples, came to be placed in private homes. In addition to well-proportioned bodies, statues of goddesses became more human in form, displaying a momentary shyness.

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