Antoine-Louis Barye (French, Paris 1796–1875 Paris )
modeled 1849, cast ca. 1867
Overall (confirmed): H. 49 3/4 x W. 45 1/4 x D. 20 3/4 in. (126.4 x 114.9 x 52.7 cm)
Gift of Samuel P. Avery, 1885
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 800
Barye's thorough grounding in classical prototypes is evident in this highly charged representation of an incident from the battle between the Lapiths and the Centaurs described in Book XII of Ovid's Metamorphoses. Bayre surely knew the series of metopes from the Parthenon depicting the Greek legend, but the death blow delivered by the Greek hero is recognizable as a borrowing from the marble Hercules and a Centaur by the Mannerist sculptor Giambologna in Florence.
Signature: Signed and dated (on rocks near centaur’s left rear leg): A.L BARYE PARIS [date illegible]
Antoine-Louis Barye ; sold to Boer's ; [ Boer’s Bazaar Royal, The Hague (until 1885; sold to Avery) ] ; Samuel Putnam Avery Sr. (in 1885; presented to MMA)