The Victory Stele of Naram-Sin is an upright stone slab commemorating Naram-Sin’s victory over the Lullubi. He wears a horned helmet, which, in Mesopotamian times, symbolized divinity. 3 stars symbolize support by gods.
The sculptor doesn’t use registers to tell the story, but rather, troops are marching up a steep mountain and the defeated Lullubi fall down to the bottom.
Hammurabi’s code helped unify groups within his empire and was the first known written law code.
Sculptors depict Hammurabi and god Shamash in bas (low) relief. Shamash is sitting in a throne wearing a horned headdress extending a rod and ring (power) to Hammurabi. Close link between humans and divinity.
The Palette of Narmer is one of the world’s first historical works of art. Its two sides commemorate the unification of upper and lower Egypt and serves as a make up palette. Each side is divided into registers and Narmer is shown of hierarchical scale, towering above his enemies.
Old Kingdom sculptures were made to hold one’s Ka. Designed out of dionite to last forever. The Khafre Ka Statue is an excellent example, with his body regal and compact. The falcon god Horus protects him.
In the Middle Kingdom, leaders were buried in rock-cut tombs hallowed out of the faces of cliffs. Paintings depicting daily life covered chamber walls. With rulers facing many challenges, statues, like that of Senusret III, depicted an anxious yet determined face.
In the New Kingdom, the first great female monarch was Hatshepsut. She constructed a funerary temple at Deir el-Bahri designed by Sehenmut. It rose from the valley floor in 3 colonnaded terraces connected by ramps.
Statues of Hatshepsut lined the temple. Sculptors were unsure how to portray her so she had a mix of male and female characteristics.