Running Bacchant


Clodion ( French, 1738 - 1814 )

About 1790–1799
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General Description

This running figure and that of the companion sculpture nearby are followers of Bacchus, the Greek god of wine. They are captured in mid-flight and richly modeled by the sculptor, Clodion, so that each side of the sculpture is equally complex and interesting. The female bacchante holds a pine-cone-tipped wand, known as a thyrsus, which is a fertility symbol. The male bacchant is a satyr, half-man and half-goat. He also carries thyrsi, from which are suspended grapes and a small kid goat, probably intended for sacrifice. Clodion was known as an accomplished sculptor in the medium of terracotta, or fired, unglazed clay.