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Power and Pathos: Bronze Sculpture of the Hellenistic World Symposium III: Identity, Continuity, and Change in the Hellenistic Cityscape

Christopher A. Gregg, term assistant professor of art history, George Mason University, and professor in charge, University of Georgia Classics Study Abroad in Rome. The exhibition Power and Pathos: Bronze Sculpture of the Hellenistic World, on view at the National Gallery of Art from December 13, 2015, through March 20, 2016, presents some 50 bronze sculptures and related works, dating from the fourth century BC to the first century AD. They span the Hellenistic period when the art and culture of Greece spread throughout the Mediterranean and lands once conquered by Alexander the Great. In this public symposium, held on March 18-19, 2016, in conjunction with the exhibition, Christopher A. Gregg examines how the core identity of the Hellenistic city manifested in traditional forms of public sculpture and architecture, often attempting to draw clear parallels with the great polities that came before. The highly competitive nature of the Hellenistic kingdoms, however, combined with the addition of new cultural interactions, also provided motivation for experimentation and aggrandizement in order to make these cities distinctive both from one another and from the archaic or classical past.