Parthenon Metope: Centaur and fallen Lapith

A detailed look at one of the metope sculptures on the parthenon. The techniques used to analyse this can be used for almost all Greek art; Drapery, anatomy, focus, movement etc. this technique can be very helpful for remembering useful points for use in essays.

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  • Created by: Zara
  • Created on: 05-04-12 12:59
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Slide 1

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· Era ­ Classical Era
· Title of Scene - Battle of the Lapiths and Centaurs
· Building (situated on) ­ Parthenon
· Position ­ South side
· Appropriate to building/setting ­ is seen with
the other Centaurmachy collection that was situated on
the south side which was out of site
· Order ­ is number 28 of 32 Metope of this category
· Marble or limestone ­ Marble
Can be found on page 114 in Susan Woodford,
(Figure 162)…read more

Slide 2

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· Most of the space is dominated by the centaur
rearing up to crush/ kill the Lapith.
· The tail of the centaur is flicking out and so helps
to eliminate the dead space by the rear of the
· With his arm stretched out with the lion skin on it
helps to fill the space above the doomed human
· The arm and the tail of the lion skin mimic each
others movement which helps to fill the space as
well as adding interest to the metope.…read more

Slide 3

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· The shape that defines the centaur is that of
the triangular chest and the rectangular
shape that makes the body of the horse
· You also have the triangles that can be seen
with the bending of the legs of the centaur
underneath the body; this is also seen in the
bending of the legs that the Lapith is
currently showing.
· This shows that even though that the body
looks complex that actually it seems to be
made out of mainly triangles…read more

Slide 4

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For me the focus of the metope is that of the
Lapith underneath the centaur as:
· The head of the lion skin is pointing
down with his front paws falling, and his
jaws also seeming to be in the same
· The centaurs three quarter chest is
seen to be tilted in the direction of the
fallen human and with his front legs
raised and curled underneath him,
coming down from the rearing position
gives a false momentum that is pointing
to the Lapith.…read more

Slide 5

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· The drapery is very minimal on this metope
only consisting of a lion skin and some cloth
around the lapith.
· The lion isn't very realistic but a very good
attempt has been made and the skin
conforms to the arm of the centaur.
· Variety of asymmetric folds on the lion skin
being held in the centaur's hand, near his
shoulder where the skin seems to be
slipping off or down his arm and the cloth
round the fallen lapith's arm.…read more

Slide 6

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· The centaur's, human half from what is left
seems to be in proportion. the three quarter
view chest has very natural definition and the
right pectoral does not appear to be
responding correctly to the movement of the
· The Lapith has a three quarter view chest
and profile legs with a three quarter view foot.
The torso appears to be quite long in
proportion to the legs, there is a gentle curve
from the stomach to the chest that shows the
slight bend of the upper torso.…read more

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