The New York Kouros

The New York Kouros
By Ryan Badke L6P
Key Facts
• Archaic statue from around the 7th
Centaury BC. Carved in Attica. (590 – 580
• Life size statue at around 1.85m in height
• Made of naxian marble
Context and function
• Based of ancient Egyptian designs.
• Found along a road from Athens to Cape
Sounion. Found in a tomb stone of a young
boy who died young or fell in battle.
• Its meant to represent perfection in manhood.
• The Kouros style of statue was believed to
serve as grave markers.
Greek Kouros next to Egyptian Statue
History of the statue
• Archaic statue from around the 7th Centaury BC. Carved
in Attica.
• It was stored in a tomb for over 2,000 years.
• It ended up in New York after being bought in 1985 for a
sum of between $9 and $12 million dollars, after a year
of restoration it was put on display. The wall panel reads
“Circa 530 B.C. or modern forgery.”
Korus style
A Kouros is a male nude statue.
They have their left foot forward
Clenched hands
High arched eyes
Stylized knees
Beaded hair
Very well toned muscles
Arms by side
Archaic style
Archaic smile
Beaded hair
Restrictive movement
Very geometric
Basic design
Small movement
Ear shape
Key points about it
Naked apart from a choker and a head band
A first for Greek free standing statues
Made from Naxian marble
Made so it is balanced and can stand on its
• Was originally painted
• Split into 5 main
sections: Head, Chest,
Abs, Pelvis and legs
• Uses shapes and
images to show muscle
and body structure.
• Uses etching techniques
to show muscles. Muscle
definition e.g. abs are
carved in.
• Looks like a basic stick
• The muscles are slightly out of proportion.
• Ears are too far back.
• Despite being free standing and left leg
forward, it looks very rigid, but it was a
first in ancient Greek statues.
• Proportions on the lower torso and hips
are out.
• Has an hour glass figure, not a typical man
• From the side the bum comes too far out
and the back dips to far in.
• The eyes are huge in comparison to the
• Muscles that don’t exist are present.
• Stretched face to incorporate for the
middle of the body to be the belly button.
What does Woodford say? (page 42)
• “… the whole statue was knit together in a
network of calculated and interlocking
• “The Greek sculptor has produced and illusion
of a figure standing on his own two feet.”
• Question 1)
– What period of art was the New York Korus from?
And what date was it believed to be made in?
– Answer – Archaic period, 590-580 BC
• Question 2)
– Where was the statue thought to be carved from? And where
was it found?
– Carved in Attica, found along a road from Athens to Cape
• Question 3)
– How tall was the statue and what was it made of?
– 1.85m high, made of Naxian marble
• Question 4)
– What does this statue represent, and where was it designed
to be displayed?
– It represents male body perfection, it was designed to be
displayed in a tomb site.
• Question 5)
– The museum in which this statue is situated in has been
accused of what?
– Forging the statue
• Question 6)
– How do we know this statue is a Korus?
– Smile, left leg forward, nude male, clenched hands, stylized
knees, beaded hair, well toned muscles, arms down by side
• Question 7)
– How do we know this statue is from the archaic period?
– Geometric patter, little movement, little detail, smile, beaded
hair, ear shape
• Question 8)
– What was the statue wearing?
– A choker and a head band
Thank you for listening

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