Contrapposto

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Contrapposto

The disposition of the human figure in which one part is turned in opposition to another, creating a counterpositioning of the body about its central axis.

Contrapposto

 

in the fine arts, a device used in the representation of a figure, in which one part of the body is posed in opposition to another. For example, the upper part of the body is turned, but the lower part is in a frontal position. Contrapposto animates the rhythm of the figure, conveying a sense of movement or tension. It emphasizes the three-dimensionality of the figure without disturbing the equilibrium of form.

References in periodicals archive ?
In both of these late extravaganzas, Mannerist attenuations of form, contraposto poses, drapery so brittle that it seems to have a life of its own, and "jewel-tone" hues, all seen under theatrical spot-lighting, produce images that seem to be less driven by religious fervor than by a desire for consistent style; the attenuated proportions of the figures in these pictures invoke the fashion sketch more than they do aesthetic eloquence.