A significant part of Mesopotamian civilization was performed by artisans. They produced products that were used on a daily basis, including pots, clothes, baskets, boats, and weaponry. They also produced artwork with the intention of exalting the ruler and the gods.
Clay was the material of choice for Mesopotamian painters. Pottery, massive structures, and tablets used to preserve history and mythology were all made of clay.
Over thousands of years, the Mesopotamians perfected their pottery-making abilities. To begin with, they made simple pots by hand. Later, they picked up pottery wheel technique. The clay was also hardened using high temperature ovens. They gained knowledge on how to create various forms, glazes, and designs. Their pottery quickly evolved into pieces of art.
A prestige symbol in ancient Mesopotamia was fine jewelry. Male and female wear jewelry equally. Jewelers created exquisite designs using precious stones, silver, and gold. They produced a wide variety of jewelry, such as bracelets, earrings, and necklaces.
The metalworkers of Mesopotamia discovered how to produce bronze by combining tin and copper around 3000 BC. At extremely high temperatures, they would melt the metal and then pour it into molds to create a variety of objects, such as tools, weapons, and sculptures.
In Ancient Mesopotamia, carpenters played an essential role as artisans. The most significant pieces were constructed from imported wood, such cedar from Lebanon. They used cedar to construct the kings’ palaces. Additionally, they built ships to sail the Tigris and Euphrates Rivers and chariots for use in battle.
Inlays were used to embellish many exquisite wooden objects. They would use tiny bits of metal, glass, shell, and jewel to create stunning, gleaming ornaments for things like musical instruments, furniture, and sacred objects.
Stonemasons sculpted some of the outstanding examples of Mesopotamian art and craftsmanship that have survived. Everything from huge sculptures to minutely detailed reliefs was carved by them. The majority of the sculptures had symbolic religious or historical meanings. Usually, they belonged to the gods or the ruler.
They also made seals out of tiny, intricate cylinder stones. Because they were employed as signatures, these seals were quite little. They could not be simply replicated since they were quite intricate.
Interesting Information about Mesopotamian Artists:
Men shown in Sumerian sculptures typically had long beards and open eyes.
The Assyrian aesthetic had an impact on the Ancient Greeks. One illustration is the Assyrian winged genie, which in Greek art assumed the shape of winged creatures like the Griffin and the Chimera.
Even the city gateways were transformed into works of art in the most affluent communities. King Nebuchadnezzar II’s construction of the Ishtar Gate in Babylon serves as an illustration of this. It is clad in brightly colored glazed bricks with animal-themed motifs.
Sculptures and pottery were frequently painted.
Several pieces of Sumerian jewelry have been found in the Royal Tombs of Ur.
Around 3500 BC, artisans in Sumer learnt how to produce glass.