Doryphoros (The Spear Bearer)

by smkmuseum, published

Doryphoros (The Spear Bearer) by smkmuseum Nov 16, 2016



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This is a 3D scan of a plaster cast of the sculpture ‘Doryphoros (The Spear Bearer)’ made by Polyclitus circa 450 BCE.

The scan is made from the cast (ref. KAS11) in The Royal Cast Collection at SMK – National Gallery of Denmark.

This is a downscaled (ca. 10 mb) version. To read more about the 3D scans of casts in The Royal Cast Collection and download all the high ress 3D models go to: www.smk.dk/3d

If you produce new work with the model and want to share it with us, drop us a line at [email protected]

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About the sculpture

The Doryphoros (The Spear Bearer) represents the strict, classical ideal of maleness. Here we find a serene, harmonious, muscular solider ready for battle. The line above the shoulder and the line above the hip point in different directions: this is a “contrapposto” position; the sculpture is in movement. The original was created by Polyclitus, who wrote a treatise on the correct proportions of a canonical work, and his sculptures were copied in great numbers. The Greek satirist Lucian (120-180 CE) did not approve of the uniformity that such dictates of taste entailed. He stated that the Doryphoros looks like a man fleeing after having been unfaithful, and that he walks as if he had a radish up his bum.

Even in the prudish 19th century it was perfectly acceptable to enjoy the many naked male and female bodies at the museums. Modern gender studies have pointed out that gender identity is formed through repetition of established patterns and systems, and indeed artefacts such as this spear bearer, and a cast collection as such, seem perfect for such a purpose.

  • Henrik Holm, senior research curator at SMK

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