The Three Graces (HOA Unit 3)

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-balanced, neat symmetry
-similar poses of outer figures; outline echo one another
-central drapery repeats chevron shapes of bent arms; echoes in reverse...
-three interlocking figures united by flowing, mainly vertical rhythm enhanced by drapery.
-thin pyramidal composition with central figure's hair knot at apex.

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-classical/Neo classical; idealised figures
-extreme purity, perfection and clarity of forms; precise contours
-flawless, smooth surfaces
-undramatic; restrained emotion; figures do not engage with onlooker
-very little suggestion of movement.
-clear derivation from Classical statuary
-Moral mission: refined feelings, moral purity; truth
-Harmonious balance between the spiritual and the sensual
-Idealised and timeless perfection
-White marble

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Materials & Techniques

-compact composition with no projections, hands/arms against body
-broader at base; feet of three figures form supporting triangle.
-solid base and supporting upright necessary
-all above reflect marble's weight, density and lack of tensile strength in lack of self-supporting forms
-marble, relatively hard stone which allows for detailed shallow carving and highly finished surfaces reflected in.
-crisp, naturalistic detailed carving of hair, drapery, facial feature
-excessively smooth, highly polished, flawless surface
-association of polished white, marble with Greek ideal female nude.

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-named Aglaia, the Goddess of Splendour, Euphrosyne, Goddess of Festivity and Thalia, Goddess of Rejoicing
-daughters of Jupiter and Aegle, also handmaidens to Venus
-Group is supported by a small tapered round altar, festooned with garlands-as if a ritual has just taken place
-all of the Three Graces face the viewer, usually one is seen from behind.
-figures touch and caress each other-oblivious of the viewer.
-great sensitivity of textures that suggest soft flesh.
-group may be interpreted as a chaste re-creation of or homage to, the purity of antiquity or alternatively a display of female flesh.

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