My work on still life painting


This is a painting I paint four years ago. It’s a still life painting, which can be relate to the modern art we discussed in our latest art class. At the place where I studied oil painting, everyone started to draw and paint with still life scene. But we know that it wasn’t until the 17th century for artist to start value the art of still life. So here is the question, why does other teacher lets everyone start up learning how to paint with still life? I think it’s because when a scene is set, people can choose any angle to start their drawing, and when they finish, everyone will have a different version of the scene. In the reading “The Basket of Apples”, it said that “Cézanne realized that unlike the fairly simple and static Renaissance vision of space, people actually see in a fashion that is more complex, we see through both time and space. In other words, we move as we see.” And this can be the purpose of my teacher is trying to carve in our mind, that perspective is an important factor when it comes to painting.

Stand UP!

Dear Anonymous:

For sure you have witness the unfair judgement from a child, the silence action of yours will not be tolerant with the Roman spirit. You should stand out with your bravery and be able to teach the boy of wrong and right, beauties and ugliness of human nature. Keeping silence is the way that push a child into fire, because he was born pure, not the blood that contaminate him, but is the environment that pollute his soul and his awareness. What the child said is racist, and put yourself in that condition, you will not have been so calm, the way you stand up to that boy is a way you stand up to yourself, to fight your own weakness and be strong to your surrounding. That is what called the Roman spirit, to live everyday like it was the end of the world. Like Marcus Aurelius wrote “Firmly, as a Roman and a man should, think at all times how you can perform the task at hand with precise and genuine dignity, sympathy, independence, and justice, making your·· self free from all other preoccupations. ” and “Say to yourself in the morning: I shall meet people who are interfering, ungracious, insolent, full of guile, deceitful and antisocial; they have all become like that because they have no understanding of good and evil.” But you, you are the one who can determine what are the right and what are the wrong, and it’s your’s responsibility to educated the other and rescue them from the evils.

Galanes, Philip. “Should I Stay Silent During One Child’s Populist Taunt of Another?” The New York Times, The New York Times, 22 Dec. 2016,®ion=stream&module=stream_unit&version=latest&contentPlacement=46&pgtype=collection.

The Ruler


I interview three friends I have in Brooklyn College, and asked them the following questions. “Do you identify yourself with an country or ethnicity beyond the United States of America?  If so, which one?How have you learned about the origins/history/past/importance of that place? Is there one person, maybe a hero or ‘wiseman’ or king or law-giver, that is important to your people–someone people tell stories about, maybe legendary, maybe true?  Can you tell me a story? What values do you think that story teaches?  Are those values important in the traditions of your people?  how?”

“I identify myself as a Punjabi from India and she learned about the history through the internet. There was a freedom fighter named Bhagat Singh who fought for India’s independence from Britain. The reason why I bring Bhagat Singh is because he is never mentioned in history lessons when India’s independence from Britain is taught.The values this story teaches are that Punjabi’s are brave. Non-Punjabi people may not believe it, but Punjabi people pride themselves on being the fighting warriors for India.” Chahat L., via Email, Tuesday afternoon.

“I identify myself as Chinese, which is ethnicity beyond the United States of America. I had learned about the history from that place from my parents. I was being taught that Mao, ZeDong was a hero to all Chinese people in the 20th century. He lead China to walk toward great success during the time of civil war. The value of the story teaches me that it is important to have intelligence and bravery to be a leader, and the key of being a great leader is to make the country strong and the citizen of the country can have a satisfy life.” Huiyi X., via WeChat, Monday night.

“I identify myself as Chinese. But I do not know anything about the origin from China because I came to America when I was 13, and at that time, I was still young and have bare knowledge about my country.” Shuting C., via WeChat, Monday night.

The similarities I found on my three interviews are two of my friends think in order to be a leader/hero of a country, they usually consider to be brave and smart. Under their leads, people will always to be proud of them because they brings peace and freedom to their own country. Otherwise they will not be consider to be “great”. The difference in the two story is Chahat said that “Bhagat Singh” is a fighter that have bravery and in Huiyi story, Mao Zedong is a intelligent leader. One of them fight in real war and the other fight with his mind and stratagem.

“These were the principal events at home and in the field that marked the reign of Romulus. Throughout – whether we consider the courage he showed in recovering his ancestral throne, or the wisdom he displayed in founding the City and adding to its strength through war and peace alike – we find nothing incompatible with the belief in his divine origin and his admission to divine immortality after death.” Vergil’s Aeneid, Book 1 [1.15]. The reason I choose this quote to connect the answers with the two interviews is because I think that in order to be a good leader, wisdom and strength are indispensability and Rumulus have both strategies as a leader of Rome.

Julius on the Calendar


” When they had begun to honour Julius Caesar (now Dictator), it was with the idea, of course, that he would be reasonable; but as they went on and saw that he was delighted with what they voted, — indeed he accepted all but a very few of their decrees,.” (Cassius Dio, Book 44.7)

“At twelve he delivered a funeral oration in honour of his grandmother Julia, Julius Caesar’s sister. At sixteen, having now come of age, he was awarded military decorations when Caesar celebrated his African triumph, though he had been too young for overseas service. Caesar then went to fight Pompey’s sons in Spain; Augustus followed with a very small escort, along roads held by the enemy, after a shipwreck, too, and in a state of semi-convalescence from a serious illness. This energetic action delighted Caesar, who soon formed a high estimate of Augustus’s character.”


The reason i choose these two quotation is because as a dictator of Rome, Julius Caesar he was unable to separate his public life from private life. In contrast to Augustus, Julius Caesar grew arrogant and delegated little power. Augustus on the other hand, was more a intelligent politician and willing to shared his power as he control the Empire. He had avenged the death of Caesar. Also, the months July and August was derived from their name Julius to July and Augustus to August.

July derived it name from Julius (in name to honor Julius Caesar), which he was responsible for the modern calendar for 365 days.  When I did the research, I learned that Julius Caesar died in his birth month, which later on rename as July. In the early Roman calendar, number of days were more differ than the modern calendar. It was called the intercalary month, which have less days than in a 30 to 31 days month. Julius Caesar instituted a different calendar which later on become the modern calendar.

-Team Minerva, YongQi Li



The Light


I went to the Metropolitan Museum few week ago, and I took some random pictures while I walk around the Art Gallery. This art work was one of them. This is “Attributed to Girolamo Mazzola Bedoli” Italian, Viadana ca. 1505-ca.1570 parma.

This painting shows the annunciation of Christ’s birth as taking place in the virgin’s bedroom, and there are angels surrounding Virgin’s. The candlelight is the only sources you can see that provide the light for the painting. The contrast between light and dark is obvious, light that shed on Virgin’s forehead and angel Gabriel face indicated the important meaning of these two characters in the painting.

In the Caravaggio painting ” Calling of St. Matthew”, the use of light is what it make the painting significant to the viewer. There are sharp contrast between the light and shadow, which create a vividness for the painting. Also there are difference between these two painting is that the “The Annunciation” are more toward perfection, and the characters in “Calling os St. Matthew” are more toward reality, man than have bear and light that give it weight and mass.

-YongQi Li, Team Minerva

Linear Perspective on my notebook cover


This is a notebook I found in my home which have a picture of a town in Paris as it cover. The reason I chose this picture as a relevant information from the art class I had week ago is because I believe this picture is related to what call— Linear Perspective. Look closely to the river sides, the distance between the two river bank seems to be getting smaller as the river goes down, but what we know in our prospect is that the river banks will never touch each other, because they are actually parallel. The further the river goes, the smaller the distance is between the river bank. But one thing we know for sure is that there will always be a river between to two sides. Similarly to what the reading Linear Perspective Interaction, it says in the text that “linear perspective eliminates the multiple viewpoints that we see in medieval art, and creates an illusion of space from a single, fixed viewpoint.” This discovery of linear perspective was so important at the time because it had great influence to the Humanism of the Renaissance.  Why? Because this prove that “‘it structured all images of reality to address a single spectator who, unlike God, could only be in one place at a time.'” It strongly support individualism, which it’s the most important things in the Renaissance.

Brings you back in time


I went to the Metropolitan Museum of Art last Saturday with my family. When you walk inside, the very first thing you see is this giant, magnificent Athena sculpture. And when you look around, you can find yourself in a Roman churches like building. In art class, I have learn about the Roman architecture: the Christian Basilica. When I look up the picture of the Basilica and compare to the museum interior, I’m able to find out the similarity immediately. They both have columns contracted inside the building, and they have a significant vast interior. When the Basilica was contracted, and because Christianity was a mystery religion, people will put greater emphasis in the interior of the architecture.  The major function of the basilica was being used as a law court, and its builded for visually meaningful. The museum interior gives me the same feeling of the Christian authority and holiness.


Roman imperialism to Modern Imperialism and their relationship



What is the appropriate MLA citation of your search return?

Mile, Gary B. “Roman and Modern Imperialism.” Comparative Studies in Society and History, Vol. 32, No. 4 (Oct., 1990), pp. 629-659

Who is the primary intended audience of the publication?

I think the primary intended audience of the publication is those who have knowledge of    imperialism.

How (if at all) does the author connect the search terms one to another?  Use one to two short quotes to illustrate your point.

The author connect the search terms “rebellion” from both Rome and modern imperialism” by  writing the article primary about the Ancient Rome imperial power and compared it with the modern world imperialism. It states in the text “Even if the idea of national rebellion had been avail subjects, they would not have had the kind of leader that concept in action. A central aspect of modern imperialism was the creation in the colonies of a distinct class of Westernized administrative officers and professionals who identified with their European rulers but were excluded by Europeans from full participation and professional advancement in the life of the metropole.”

At the modern imperialism happened, the European will concurred foreign lands and educated the native in their European languages and tries to Europeanize them. Similarly, the Roman were willingly and freely incorporated newly conquered people into their own society, freely giving them citizenship and tried to Romanize them. By supporting this idea, the author wrote “From this perspective, the difference between Roman and non-Roman was unimportant. The Romans thought of themselves not as a single ethnic group but as embracing all people.”

Select a quote from the ancient texts assigned as home work that seems relevant to your selected publication.  Insert the quotation and explain its relevance.

In the paragraph above, it said that Roman imperialism have great impact to the Modern Imperialism. In the ancient texts it states that ” The revolts of the 140s in Macedonia and Greece were crushed and provinces established. Dominance became equated with ruthlessness – Corinth and Carthage were razed in 146. Rome now took provinces in Africa , Asia (133), Cilicia (101), and Cyrene (96).   The Romans are thus replacing the rule and influence of the Hellenistic kings .” In here, you can tell that the Roman Empire was powerful to be dominance through the Mediterranean.

  • YongQi Li, Team Minerva







Love for Triangle

IMG_0122I went to 34th Street shopping today, and I walked pass this building, at Korean Town, I though that I can take a picture of this door and make it my Art class homework. Because this building literary give you a sense of how the American adopt the fashion of Ancient Greek art. When you look at the pediment, you can see sculpture has been engraved in the triangle, just like the pediment from Temple of Artemis. It reminds me that Professor Simon has taught us Greek sculptor will engraved sculpture into a position of triangle, because they think that triangle can be consist of a best shaped. (example: The Three Goddess)Also, there are many paintings are being drew from a triangle base. (example: Madonna del Prato) It’s interesting that you can discover many buildings in New York that have a Greek style. But you can see the differ because there are no human like sculpture in this pediment. But in Ancient Greece temple pediment, sculptor love to engrave God or Goddess in order to express their belief.


Who is Alexander the Great?

“Do you know who Alexander the Great was? What do you know about him? Where did you learn about him” This are the question I asked my mom, dad, and a friend of mine.

Jana D. my mother, aged 46,at our home knew who Alexander the Great was because she read about him when she was still in high school in China. She had been taught Alexander was a successful Greek ruler and had conquered many places. Then the detail of what had Alexander done she couldn’t remember. But mostly, that was it. My mom said that because it was long time ago and China education was mainly on the country itself, she didn’t have a insight knowledge of Alexander.

Compare to my mom, my dad answer to “Who is Alexander the Great?” was a lot more simpler. Leo L. my father, aged 52, also at our home said “I have no idea, is he some sort of King from Greek? If not, then he must be a King from Europe.”

At last, I asked my friend Betty, aged 18, at the Campus green, she said”Alexander the Great was a Macedonian King, he had fought to expand his territory throughout the Mediterranean Sea to the border of India. Also he had successfully conquer Persia and Egypt.” And she told me that she learned it from some sort of history website she been on.

All three answers I received have similarity of they all knew that Alexander was a King, even my father who knows absolutely nothing about him. I guess the use of “the Great” had point out how successful Alexander was. Betty, my friend who answered the question, have the same knowledge of Alexander from my learning through classic class. Although I had learned more about him in a in-depth knowledge.

Ideal Society

“What is an ideal society?” One may asked. The answer of this question is quiet simple. “There is no ideal society.” why? Because society is a paradox by it’s very nature. Citizens in all cities wish to be live free, rich and peace. But none of the city satisfy with all these terms.

In the article “My Beijing: The Scared City”, the author went to Beijing, capital of China. He have seen the society was being transform in a way that “its great city walls and many of its temples and distinctive alleys, or hutong, were destroyed to make way for the new ideals of an atheistic, industrial society.” When he see all of this happening, he think the culture of the city has been lost.” Lost was a vast medieval city of 25 square miles and also a way of life, just as the local cultures of the world’s other great cities have been swamped by our restless times”. The author said. In the Beijing, many of the parks are being change into restaurant and places people will spend money, and more importantly, the Temple in Beijing (which have great meaning to the city because of what its symbolize) has also being sacrifices to benefit a wealthy minority.  The government believes in “Ideal Society” had drives China in a fast growth economic system. In order to do so, they had break down many things that came from the pass and very few of them can be maintain to the modern time. Although the author was first disagree and think that Beijing has lost it culture, he then prove himself wrong. ” And so the city changes — not back to the past but into something made up of ideas from the past — of filial piety, respect for authority, traditional religions, but also privilege for the rich. ” The culture has not been vanish but to be preserve in a way that new ideas are also being mix in. Also I do agree that I live a society which they live in because new idea will always come out, and for a society changes are needed in order for  a better society to being born.

But I think that Plato wouldn’t agree that they live in the same society because in Book 2, Plato mention that “They will recline on couches strewn with yew and myrtles and feast with their children, drink their wine, and , crowned with wreaths, hymn the gods. They will enjoy having sex with one another, but they will produce no more children than their resources allow, lest they fall into either poverty of war.” And because the “ideal Society” in Beijing  was bough out by war and many of the revolution, and the government wanted many change in economic, it’s much different than the “The Luxurious City” from Plato’s writing because Socrates idea of a “healthy city” should be peace and everybody should live happily under the existence of gods and no poverty.

Lan, Johnson. “My Beijing: The Sacred City.” The New York Times 7 May. 2017. Web. 18 Sep. 2017


Why Bararian?

Bararian the word itself, means that “a human who is perceived to be either uncivilized or primitive.” At the time, the Greek think that they were the most civilized race, and everyone else were beneath them. When the Roman came in to their cities, they spoke a language which the Greek didn’t understand. So the Greek called them “barbarian”, because they think people speaking of another languages would sounded like “bar-bar-bar”.

But don’t get confuse, the word “barbarian” back then wasn’t fully used to describe people who were not being civilized but just meant that they didn’t speak Greek. Like the Persian, Roman and Egyptians, Greek called all them “barbarians”. But are they really? I don’t think so! Many of them at the time already had a lot better technology and education then the Greeks.

In a article I found called “Barbarians battle Orcs at Delta Park”, the text describe “For example, today this is the barbarian team and they have requested that they go on a raid, so the plot team has written the storyline along these lines for them.” There are picture taken in the park, and you can see that people who are in the “barbarian” team wear less clothes and used weapon that are more ferocious, unlike the swords. It gives audience the scene of what will the barbarians looked like times ago, with messy hair and dirty clothes(sometimes they don’t even wear clothes). The social value is being affirm as a share value to the audience is people will easily being judged by their appearance. And in the modern time, audience can simply determine which sides are the “barbarians” just by look at it instead of really get in to know them.

In “Herodotus on the Persian”,  author said that “For Asia, with all the various tribes of barbarians that inhabit it, is regarded by the Persians as their own; but Europe and the Greek race they look on as distinct and separate.” He did not  specify the race of the tribes but to called them “barbarians”. If the Persians regarded the tribes of barbarians as their own, did that meant they are also barbarians? Yes for the Greek because they think everyone else are barbarian, but a clear “no” for us because we know that Persians is just a different race but not a lower class of people.>

Languages that are different and yet the same

IMG_0360 2

This is a subway map that has been confuse me for a while. When I went back to China GuangZhou this summer, subway was the most common transportation I take in order to go places. In city like GuangZhou, you can see there are a lot of foreigner come to travel or even stay because of work. The most convenient transportation for them is subway, and I see a lot of people taking it. But how can people read the destination name in English in a way which even me, a local Chinese can get confuse of? As an example, Changshou Lu, in Chinese “changshou” would have meant “Longevity”, and for “Lu” it meant “road” or “street”. In United States, many of the streets were given by name, like “Prince Street”,  “Wall Street” and “Mott Street”. So the English that was shown on the map was not exactly “English”, they are “phonetic transcription”. But for some destinations, their name are written in correct English, like “Haizhu Square”, “The Second Workers’ Cultural Palace”, and people can recognize base on the names.

If you are wondering how can this subway map links to the reading of Aphrodite, it’s because when a single Hymn were translate from two different person, the meaning of the Hymn might be different base on how the person understand the Hymn. If they translate the reading word by word, then it must be terrible because different languages have their own specific structures.

When the “Homeric Hymn of Aphrodite” was translated by Gregory Nagy, the story are more life telling and easier to be understand. In another hand, the reading that was translated by William Blake Tyrrell, was more a standard poetry, with standard format. Also in line 3 Gregory Nagy translated the sentence to “…who arouses sweet desire for gods and who subdues the races of mortal humans…” and William Blake Tyrrell translated to “…who stirs up sweet longing in gods and subdues the tribes of mortal men,” they chose different words in one single sentence. I think that William sentence reflect more about the ancient society of Greece because he chose the word “mortal men” instead of “mortal human” like Gregory did. Back at the time, men and women were in an unequal status, and in many agreements in history, human being were being written as “men”, so I look at the reading, I think William have a more precise translation.