Beware of Pan!

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The marble statue of Pan dated 1st or 2nd century A.D. by an unknown author depicts the half-man half-goat god in full-size unsparingly showing realistic details of the creatures physiology. The general impression of the piece is that of being driven forward from the pedestal. The stern expression of his exaggerated face and the prevalent body expression suggest the viewer the idea of erratic uncontrollable power coming from the ancient god.

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The author puts a special emphasis on the creatures head being that of sinewy middle-aged man with exuberant hair both on the scalp and on the face. His long erect lock of hair in the front echoes with his long and thick goatee looking in the same direction. His facial features, being massive and horrendous, are proportional and clearly cut. The facial expression is tough with the eyebrows frowned so much that the skin in the centre of Pans forehead is bulging. His huge eyes radiate animal energy and frightening unfamiliar psychology. Massive curly whiskers reverberate with lavish wavy hair on the sides of his head. The general texture of the piece is glassy with a few cracked spots under the goatee. The polished face, perfectly reflecting the light, is rushed forward, expressing the gods look into the far distance.

Pans torso is disproportionally smaller compared to the head. However, it is surprisingly lean and muscular for a middle-aged man. The body is not preserved as well as the head, the marble stone peeled in many spots across the brawny abdomen and the neck keeps the traces of being broken and glued back again. All these details, although unintended by the author, render some kind of a battle-seasoned air to the portrayal of the god. The collarbone is distinct, the nipples are protruding, the arms and stomach impress with their athletic shape. Surprisingly, Pans erect phallus is flagrantly small especially in contrast with the thing looking like phallus carved on the tree trunk onto which the statue is leaning. The legs beneath the hip and upper thigh are hairy with the same strands of thick fur as found on the face and head. His thin shins and ankles flow smoothly into massive hooves, also bearing the traces of destruction. Raising to the level of Pans thighs the tree stump, covered with a piece of animal skin, standing to the gods left suggests the idea that the whole construction was used to serve some purpose, supposedly that of being a support for something.

The material, used to create the sculpture, - white marble seems to be the ideal substance for reproduction of humanlike figures. The white stone, being translucent and light reflecting, creates a perfect tint to render the natural hues of human skin. The contrasting black marble pedestal with grey geometric shapes on its front compliments the mild softness of the white in the main body of the piece.

Thus, the authors suggested aim of depicting ancient unpredictable force embodied in the Greek god of shepherds is achieved through a detailed portrayal of his frightening face and powerful body in a highly realistic way. The chosen material and contrasting statue support place special emphasis on the face of the god, creating a persuasive impression of fear that an ancient average person must have felt while facing a strange being like Pan.

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