Hercules Upholding the Heavens by Paul Manship

Hercules Upholding the Heavens by Paul Manship sample essay
Hercules Holding the Heavens by Paul Manship

Hercules upholding the heavens sculpture was created by Paul Manship in 1918. It was carved out of bronze and its dimensions are 128 by 84 by 45in. The sculpture’s medium is bronze. I was drawn to the sculpture by its gigantic nature, standing 128in high. When I got near, was fascinated to see a man holding the universe, and kneeling with one knee.

Also, the story of Hercules is interesting. He is presented as a demi-god, which means he was a half-human being and half a god. Hercules featured in the story about the Temple of Zeus where he held the heavens and Atlas went for gold. However, Hercules became tired and asked Prometheus, a mortal man to pull the heavens off. Atlas, also a demi god joined and helped them to pull off the heavens.  I will find out more about whether Hercules’ being was more of a god or of a human being. In my opinion, the sculpture teaches people that the gods also need help.

Hercules upholding the heavens sculpture combines classical idealism and naturalism. Classical idealism is represented in the manner that the sculpture gives viewers the power to attach meaning to it. Viewers can decide whether Hercules was a demi-god or a normal human being by examining the sculpture and its context.

Hercules was a relatable human character although we was not all human. He was a great leader because people could relate to him in some sort of way. Just like humans, Hercules had to face eleventh labor. After completing the ten labors, Eurystheus gave Hercules the eleventh labor because slaying the Hydra did not count.

Eurystheus sent Hercules to steal Hera’s wedding gift to Zeus; a set of golden apples guarded by a group of nymphs known as Hesperides. The task was so difficult that Hercules needed the help of Promotheus, a mortal being and the god Atlas to pull it off. So Hercules tricked Atlas to go and get the Apples while Hercules held the heavens for Atlas.

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