Dec 3, 2023

Here a supposedly original Kourous, now at the MET in New York.

This is one of the earliest marble statues of a human figure carved in Attica. The rigid stance, with the left leg forward and arms at the side, was derived from Egyptian art. The pose provided a clear, simple formula that was used by Greek sculptors throughout the sixth century B.C. In this early figure, almost abstract, geometric forms predominate; and anatomical details are rendered in beautiful analogous patterns. Kouros statue marked the grave of a young Athenian aristocrat.

Some however still doubt its originality, with that “je ne sais quoi” of Modigliani and also an unusual collar.

While less doubts are still in place for the more sadly famous “Kouros” from the Getty (here on the side), which, after being paid a fortune in 1985, now displays a label “530 BC or modern forgery,” after a decades-long saga.

The “Getty Kouros” was removed from view at the museum after it was officially deemed to be a forgery.

In depth investigation came after an indisputably fake torso similar to that of the Getty Kouros was discovered, causing some experts to reverse their position on the authenticity of the piece. Further investigation revealed that the curator who presented the kouros to the Getty for purchase forged the accompanying provenance documents.