Sculpture has been a very important part of art history throughout thousands of years. For the past few months I have viewed many different kinds of sculpture, including Greek archaic sculptures, Greek classical sculptures, Greek Hellenistic sculptures and Roman sculptures. All of the sculptures that I have seen and analyzed have very interesting characteristics, but the one that I have analyzed most recently was the most fascinating. Hermes carrying the infant Dionysos, by the artist Praxiteles, was sculpted circa 350 B.C., and the copy that I analyzed, circa second century B.C. This sculpture was from the Greek classical period and is originally from Greece. The original can be seen in the Olympia Museum in Greece, and the replica that I have viewed is in the Sojourner Truth Library on SUNY New Paltz campus. The sculpture of Hermes carrying the infant Dionysos was a very interesting work of art to look at and analyze. I have viewed this sculpture by means of slides on a flat surface, but after seeing the actual sculpture, I was amazed. When I first approached it, its size was shocking. I was unaware that this figure stood so tall. Hermes and Dionysos together were approximately seven to seven and a half feet tall, and approximately three feet wide, including the base that Hermes was standing on.
As most of Praxiteles' sculptures were, this sculpture was originally made of marble, but the copy viewed was made of plaster cast. Hermes posture was rather relaxed, with one arm reaching upward, and the other arm bent at the elbow, holding Dionysos. The clothing worn by Hermes and Dionysos was scarce. Both were nude, which was typical during this time period, and Praxiteles was actually the "inventor" of creating nude sculptures. Although the two figures are nude, Hermes is wearing sandals, and the drapery is partially covering Dionysos' legs. Hermes hairstyle is short, curly and unfinished looking, while Dionysos' hair is very vague.
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