The Centaur's Smile: The Human Animal in Early Greek Art is the catalogue for an exhibition at the Princeton University Art Museum (October 11, 2003 to January 18, 2004).
This landmark book is the first to investigate representations of these human animals in early Greek art (ca. 850-450 B.C.). The Centaur's Smile discusses the oriental antecedents of these fantastic creatures, examining the influence of Egyptian and Near Eastern models on the formation of Greek monsters in the early Archaic period. Essays also explore the nature and origin of horse-men (centaurs and satyrs) and the ways in which they are represented in early Greek art. Furthermore, the book surveys the broader range of Greek composite creatures and discusses their evolving forms and changing roles and meaning. Over one hundred exquisite objects-all beautifully reproduced in color-are described and analyzed in detail. Among the featured works are reliefs and statuettes in stone, bronze, and terracotta; jewelry and metalwork in gold, silver, and electrum; engraved sealstones in rock crystal, jasper, and cornelian; and painted ceramic vases from Athens, Corinth, Rhodes, Miletus, Cyprus, and Etruria.