Telamones and Atlantes are architectural elements that take the form of human figures used as supporting members in buildings.
Telamones, also known as caryatids, are male figures that are depicted as large, muscular columns or pillars. They are typically shown standing upright, bearing the weight of the structure above them on their heads or shoulders.
Telamones were commonly used in Ancient Greek and Roman architecture, where they were often used to support entablatures, balconies, or roofs. They are usually shown wearing Greek or Roman attire, sometimes with decorative elements such as drapery or armor.
Atlantes, on the other hand, are specifically male figures that are depicted as supporting columns or pillars. Like telamones, atlantes are often shown standing upright, with the weight of the structure conveyed through their bodies. However, atlantes are typically depicted as fully-formed figures, whereas telamones can sometimes be simplified into a more column-like shape.
Atlantes are often shown in different poses, such as kneeling or holding up lintels or entablatures on their shoulders. They are frequently depicted in Ancient Egyptian and Mesoamerican architecture, as well as in the Renaissance and Neoclassical periods.
Both telamones and atlantes serve both structural and decorative purposes in architecture. By using human figures as supporting members, these elements add a sense of grandeur and elegance to a building, as well as providing additional support for the structure.
They also reflect the cultural and artistic styles of the time period in which they were created, and can be considered important examples of figurative sculpture in architecture.