Part of the marble stele (grave marker) of Kalliades

Greek, Attic

On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 155

A fleeing Gorgon decorates this tapering, predella-looking slab, part of the grave stele of Kalliades, as we learn from the inscription carved in three lines from left to right below the Gorgon’s left knee: "Kalliades, son of Thoutimides".
The Gorgon, dressed in a short chiton, spreads her wings wide and moves her arms and legs forcefully as she rushes through air. Her head and upper torso are rendered frontally, while her lower torso and legs are shown in profile and bent at the knees in the so-called "knie-lauf" schema, an iconographic convention frequently employed in Archaic Art to denote speed. Mythological creatures like gorgons and sphinxes often functioned as apotropaic images that protected the grave.

Part of the marble stele (grave marker) of Kalliades, Marble, Greek, Attic

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