Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Sowing and Ploughing in the Fields

The ancient Egyptians created the wall painting Sowing and Ploughing in the Fields for the tomb of Sennedjem in the 13th century B.C. The primary purpose of tomb wall paintings is to reflect “the cycle of the seasons that will repeat for eternity” (Aspect Art). Therefore, many tomb wall paintings often present hunting and farming scenes. And this significantly shows how much the Egyptians back in the 13th century B.C. valued their agricultural lives. They knew they could not survive without nature, and they wanted their later generations to remember that and appreciate nature.
This tomb wall painting, Sowing and Ploughing in the Fields, is so simple but yet the color and subject delivers a clear and powerful message to the audience: people in Egypt at that time lived agricultural lives. A man and a woman are cultivating the land with the help of two goats. This scene is significant because it shows that Egyptians at that time era were no longer hunters or nomadic people. They had learned how to take advantage of the natural world and became sedentary people. Unlike the Western art works, the subjects in this painting are dull and lifeless. Additionally, the painter uses yellow as the background of the painting which makes the painting look even more spiritless. However, it is important to realize the significance of a tomb wall painting or even a typical Egyptian painting is to record and pass on the interesting scenes and stories which the ancestors left behind (Aspect Art). The fact that they once farmed, hunted animals and lived in the natural world were what the ancient Egyptians hoped to tell their descendants. They lived in nature, understood the significance of it and respected it.

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