Bronze Busts & Colourful Gods

Busts of Roman emperors, gods and philosophers. The busts are bronze-coloured or in gold patina and are strikingly similar to the originals. In ancient times colour was conveyed through the choice of materials. Gilding was often added to bronze busts.

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Coloured busts and colourful gods

One of the most interesting exhibitions, which treats an important part of ancient Roman life in a very simple and yet profound way, is called "Colourful Gods" and deals with the polychromy of antiquity. Polychrome translates into true colour and the term is used to describe the colours employed in painting and other arts and their compositions. The exhibition, which is officially supported by the Bavarian state government among others, has been very successful internationally and has also enjoyed great popularity skilled craftspeople.

These busts and statues, in all their diversity, were not just modelled on those in the Pantheon in Rome, historical writings were also studied so that influential people, with almost superhuman characteristics, could be portrayed in all their ingenuity and strength - from innovatively-thinking nature philosophers such as Aristotle to undefeated strategists such as Gaius Julius Caesar. All have been portrayed in colourful statues and bronze busts that appear golden in the right light. Colourful gods traces the steps from ancient Rome to ancient Greece and shows what role soldiers played in these societies.

White is an outdated view of antiquity

Our "Colourful Gods" category thus also represents one of the most important aspects of ancient Rome in all its former colours - religion and in some ways the cults of personality that formed around notable personalities. As modern viewers, we see only white marble or dark terracotta vases, this should not be our only picture of ancient architecture and statues. Although colours are not as durable as stone, they can be determined from the pigments so that items can be rebuilt in their former glory.

Life in ancient Rome, just like that in ancient Greece, to which it had deep cultural ties, was strongly influenced by religion and its mystic rites. In this spirit, there were not only fantastic working temples to be found in many Roman cities, some of which survive today, but there were also many small busts and other statues, which were dedicated to various gods and brought good luck or foiled bad. These were decorated in different colours, according to the various cults or regional preferences, so you could actually find colourful gods in Roman cities.

Although many temples and other buildings have survived the times and impress us today, over the millennia they have lost their bright colours, back then they shone in magnificent hues to pay homage to the gods. Furthermore, the Colourful Gods exhibition shows the remarkable development of the history of mankind in general: Whether it was painted bronze busts or statues or complex architecture, almost all the Mediterranean cultures were keen to worship their gods cults with as much magnificence as possible with valuable and rich colours.

Why colour?

Today, colours are often used as a figure of speech whether, in clothing or in art It was the same in all ancient cultures, but certain colours have been linked with aspects of religious or other symbolism. Reds, especially purple, had a particularly important role in Roman life and played a major role in the design of architecture and art. Since, however, it is very rare to find these colours and they were difficult to produce, or had to be imported via long trade routes, they represented a luxury item, which was reserved for the upper classes of society. Furthermore, their immense value made them all the more popular as a colourant for "colourful gods". Also, body armour made of pure gold was used to glorify the brave soldiers of a city-state and preserve them forever for posterity.

Our bronze busts are another good example of the diversity and creativity of ancient Roman Art: The solid bronzes represent not only gods or mythical creatures, but also great statesmen, generals and other deserving citizens of Rome.

Colourful Gods is a category that deals with all these heroes of history and aims to bring them back to life with fresh, new colours. For example, the bronze busts of Alexander the Great, and the first Roman Emperor Augustus can be enjoyed in a wide range of bright colours and also be admired in a golden patina. All of these pieces are inspired by those presented in the Colourful Gods exhibition and are modelled on original artefacts to convey the magnificence of ancient Rome and Greece.

Hand made in Germany

Thanks to the high quality materials and the loving manual work, each individual piece will keep its quality over the long term, so that the ancient gods and heroes will go on shining in bright colours, bronze and gold.