WELCOME! My name is Kelsey and this my art history blog :) I hope that whatever I share can be helpful to you but this also my way of studying for my own AP art history exam. But in the end I hope that I am not the only one benefitting from it.
Now I could go on and on about what an amazing piece this is (not just because it’s a favorite of mine) but I’ll spare you from my rambling. Laocoon and his sons is back from the ancient greek era of the Hellenistic Baroque. Now you may be asking if it’s Greek then why is it located in Rome. That’s because it’s located at the Vatican museum today and we are unsure of exactly where in Greece it was made. Before I continue the hard facts about the piece let me give you a quick spiel on exactly who Laocoon was. Now if I get this wrong I’m sorry, I’m not exactly a history buff on ancient Troy. Laocoon was a priest of Troy who warned the city to beware the Trojan horse. Of course no one believed him and for spewing lies Laocoon and his two sons were sentenced to death. The sculpture depicts the scene of of their death.
Now your next question may be how can it be a considered a baroque piece if the baroque happened centuries after the hellenistic era. It is considered hellenistic baroque because of the emotion the sculpture evokes, which is a prime characteristic of baroque art. Also the immense amount of detail found in the piece is extraordinary. Just looking at one of his sons faces there is so much sheer emotion that is being shown. I love this piece for so many reasons and the amount of detail has to be one of them. The skill of the three sculptors is remarkable and should be recognized. Especially since not long after this came the fall of the Roman empire and all of this skill and technology would be lost for centuries until the renaissance.