Art as Luxury

            One of the most fascinating aspects of commerce in Lattes is the rate with it grew and became a way of life starting in 625 B.C. As time went on we are able to see how modern society began to be formed. Lattes’ trading relationship with Marseille brought them wine and many other imports. From what archeologists have found we can see that they used bowls, vases, eating utensils, and many more objects that we currently use in our everyday lives. The huge jump from the Neolithic period into this protohistory period is astounding simply because of the advancement of technology, the formation of more modern societies, and the development of trade and globalization.

            During this time we also see that the people of Lattes began to import many goods from Greece. I found it interesting that we begin to see goods that are used purely as a luxury. Looking back at Lascaux and the conditions in which they lived we saw that their paintings were done under much more dire circumstances. Art for them was a risk, something that took time away from their lives of hunting and even just trying to survive. It was obvious that art for them was extremely important and that they wanted to tell a certain story through their cave paintings. This same concept is also seen in the case of Morbihan. To be able to create such a pace a Morbihan, the entire society had to agree that it was important and most likely had to spend their lives committing themselves to that project. For both of those societies it was obvious that knowledge of time, space, and mathematics was essential and that they truly believed in what they were creating. For the people of Morbihan, their art was a way to honor their dead and had so many implications and clues as to who the people of that time period were and what they believed in.

            Looking at the art of Lattes we can see that the idea of “luxury” began to influence the creative realm of societies. Art became commercial, something to be bought and traded – something to decorate a home with. While this is not necessarily bad, it is interesting to see how quickly the change happened as soon as societies were able to come into contact with one another instead of living in pure isolation. While the city of Lattes is obviously cohesive and an architectural marvel, as far as art goes it seems as though it becomes more individually based. No longer is an entire society working towards creating great works of art, but rather the population is even willing to import artistic objects that were made in a region that is not their own. I think that this is a very modern viewing of art that we can use our creative talents in ways that will provide us with more luxury and entertainment rather than as something someone or a whole society feels compelled to do.

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