Style Neo-Renaissance / Ref.15061
Discophorus, late 19th century from an antique by NAUCYDÈS
Width: 33'' ½ 85cm
Height: 69'' ⅝ 177cm
Depth: 18'' ½ 47cm
XIXth century, France
The Discophore is a statue representing an athlete carrying a disc, unlike the discobolus, which is represented in its throwing gesture. The statue at the origin of this representation, attributed to the Greek sculptor Naucydes and dated to the beginning of the 4th century BCE, was made of bronze. It is mentioned by Pliny the Elder in his Natural History.
It has disappeared, like most of the Greek originals of this period, but it is known from Roman copies. Two of these copies are kept in the Louvre Museum and the Vatican Museums. Our statue is much later, since it dates from the end of the 19th or beginning of the 20th century. It proves that this timeless model has been appreciated from Antiquity to the contemporary period.
The athlete's figure is strongly idealized: the sculptor chooses to construct the proportions of his work according to the canon of Polycleitos, to achieve perfect proportions, which adds to an idealized morphology in terms of musculature and face . The young man is shown naked. Indeed, for the Greeks, the beauty of the body being the mirror of that of the soul, the representation of a beautiful naked body is a symbol of the goodness of the latter.
The best-known sculpture on the subject is by Myron (c. 460-450 BC). it represents an athlete throwing a discus. This work is also known through copies, the most famous of which is Discobolus Lancellotti (c. 120 AD), kept at the Palazzo Massimo in Rome.
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