menkaure

The sculpture group of King Menkaure and His Queen is positioned in one of
the basic types of Egyptian sculpture – the Standing/Striding pose. The figure
of Menkaure is rigidly frontal, although his head is slightly turned to the right.
His left foot is slightly advanced, however the upper body does not respond
to this uneven distribution of weight – there is no tilt in the shoulders, nor a
shift in the hips. All movement of the figure is suppressed: his muscular arms
hang down his athletic body, they are not flexed at the elbow and do not
break through the front contour of his thighs. The body remains wedded to
the block of stone from which it was carved. The artist does not remove the
"dead stone" between the arms and torso and most importantly his advanced
leg is not carved in the round, which contributes to the solid and majestic
appearance of the statue. The Queen assumes the same rigidly frontal
posture, however her left leg is less advanced than his, which alludes that she
is a subordinate figure to her king – in this stance she is just echoing the
pharaoh's decisive actions. She embraces the pharaoh with her right arm
placing her hand around his waist; her left arm is bent at the elbow and
covering her stomach rests on the king's left arm. There is a space of about
couple of centimeters between the statues that widens towards the base, and
which makes Menkaure appear standing independently from his female
counterpart. In this frontal, striding forward posture the pharaoh looks
confident and in control. …

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