Zeus or Poseidon of Artemision, 460 BCE (Cast in 1992)

Unknown Artist


Bronze

Thought to represent the mightiest of the Olympian gods, Zeus (or less likely Poseidon), this monumental sculpture is a cast of the original that was found in two pieces at the bottom of the sea off the Cape of Artemision in the 1920s. Zeus is the militant protector ready for action and would have originally been holding a thunderbolt (or trident, in the case of Poseidon). This statue was most likely created as a votive for a temple dedicated to Zeus. In presenting such works as offerings, the Greeks attempted to appease their gods, earning divine assistance or favor in return. Created in the beginning of the Classical Period of Greek sculpture (ca. 480–300 BCE), this elegant and balanced figure is the embodiment of beauty, control, and strength.

Given in honor of Glenn & Rene Wade, generously donated by Ronald & Susan Welborn