Egyptian Decorative Art: Gods and Gold Egyptian decorative art is distinctly different from that of the rest of Africa. More Middle Eastern than African, Egypt’s civilization dates back to the fourth century BCE. Ancient Egypt is notable for its many elaborate palaces and tombs, most of which were decorated with gilded statues, intricately cut stones, and ornaments with cut gemstones. Egyptians pioneered many of the design and architectural elements that are still used today. In addition, they were among the first to use and classify synthetic dyes extensively to color decorative objects. In fact, Egyptian blue (calcium copper silicate) is considered the world’s first synthetic pigment. Ancient Egypt’s many gods and goddesses were common themes on pottery, in textiles, and in their funerary equipment. Gold was easily found throughout ancient Egypt and was more commonly used for decorative art items than silver. Egyptians of this era also perfected the art of gilding, putting a thin layer of gold leaf over
An Egyptian gold statue of the goddess Serket at the Tutankhamun exhibition.
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