Imagine walking through a great hall. A giant chamber lit by fire and torches, filled with sculptures of strange and powerful animals, flanked on all sides by menacing guards and soldiers. Before you finally make it to your king, you are forced to walk between two strange giant stone animals with bodies of a bull, the wings of an eagle, one with the feet of a lion and the other’s are hooves. Both of these giants wear the face of your king.
I have stood next to the nine or ten foot tall sculptures pictured above and, even though the only guards on duty now are old and out of shape, the towering sculptures remain intimidating. They are also very incredible to look at. These sculptures are an interesting mix of realism and stylized pattern. It is easy to get lost in the geometry and decoration of the beard and wings, while at the same time you might find yourself appreciating the artist’s understanding of natural form.