Israeli art is a reference to the art produced by the many cultures and civilizations living in the ancient Israeli kingdom, especially during its height of the 9th Century B.C.E.. The Kingdom of Israel was a powerful presence for nearly 500 years before it fell to the Neo-Assyrian Empire in 722 B.C.E.. The region was buffeted from all sides by competing kingdoms and empires that wished to stake claim to the region’s natural prosperity and merchant-based riches.
The art of this region evolved without any single culture or set of styles under which it could unite. The archaeological record of Israeli art ranges from as far back as the Late Bronze Age during the time of Canaanite and Egyptian influences to the Hellenistic period. At the time of Alexander the Great’s death in 322 B.C.E., a power struggle for the rich lands on the edge of the Roman Empire led to a number of revolts and uprisings from both within and without. By the 6th and 5th centuries B.C.E. the Second Temple period had begun and the prevailing symbols of Jewish identity had developed into a fixed canon, which inevitably left a lasting mark on the Levant’s art and architecture.
The Baidun Shop offers a number of wonderful pieces from Israeli antiquity. The craft of the ancient Israeli artisans who created these pieces used the local earth as the source of their terra cotta, imbuing their vessels and figures with a historical connection to the region’s ancient history.