Introduction to nigerian craft

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Egyptian painting reveals the same clear visual design and illustrative skill as works in stone. Egyptian artists worked in durable materials, climate is hot and dry and their population was stable, above all, they buried their finest art with their dead. Their paintings were in profile.


There are three principal types of art in Egypt. Over the three periods, those types of arts were practiced but with different approaches.

  1. Domestic Art

  2. Art for adoration of the dead

  3. Religious art

  1. Domestic Art: These are the art practice that relates to the production; drawing and painting of household utensils, home decorations, clothing, murals on private and public buildings, musical instruments and jewelry. This started in Egypt for about 40 years before spreading to other African countries.

  2. Adoration of the dead: This area of art was deeply rooted in their belief in “Life after death” and supremacy of their kings and nobles. Under this type of art features the following; Tomb building, Tomb decorations, Statue erections of the deceased, death mask making, mummy cases and wrappings, models of all apparels used during the lifetime of the deceased.

  3. Religious Art: This art was greatly motivated by the Egyptians deep religious beliefs. They worshipped many gods and erected buildings for them. This type of art is in four categories.

  1. Sculpting gigantic statue for deities (gods)

  2. Building of temples to immortalize the nobles dead and deities.

  3. Temple decorations which is either decorated as painting or sunk relete (i.e carving the walls) depleting the gods, their characteristics and functions.

  4. Erection of monuments to honor deities.

Egyptian Religious Beliefs and Practices

Funeral Pre-Occupation

The cults of the dead. They believe in life after death. The nobles did this at the expense of slaves and the common people.

When the king died, he was buried with slaves and all of his other royal belongings with the belief that he would use them in his “new” home.


  1. MURALS: The Egyptians were very fond of moral decorations that is, wall paintings. This could be seen in the walls of Tombs, Palaces, and Temples.

  2. SCULPTURES: These were strictly for nobles, in form of portraits (bursts) and statues. Most of them, where gigantic, rigid, stylized at times mixed i.e. Animal and human form.

  3. PAINTINGS: Most paintings were done on walls, but the ones not done on walls, were done on papyrus-the first kind of paper. These paintings were done along-side with hieroglyphics some times to record activities.

  4. Egyptian art was more for recording than beauty.

  5. They had lots of styles for their art.

  6. They NEVER followed the law of perspective. Each figure on a painting was placed according to importance even if they were smaller naturally. Eg. The king or nobles were painted largely while the subjects (common people) were smaller.

  7. Their art where symbolic in nature. i.e. the use of signs and symbols.


Pyramid is the burial place for pharaohs. It also represents the sun rays as they strike the earth – an important symbol of Sun–Cult.

Pyramids are gigantic, measuring upto 480fts (146 meters) in height. It is either rectangular or square at the base and tapers up to end in an apex at the top. The great age of pyramids started in the Old Kingdom.

There are approximately 118 to 138 pyramids in Egypt.


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