DescriptionA Vicus Maternity Figure
Ça 500 BC-200 AD
Slipped and painted ceramic
8¾" High x 11¾" Long
This effigy vessel decorated in the highly stylized "Ayabeca" sub-style is painted in negative resist technique. It is an unusually fine example in that it is more sculpturally articulate than the standard Vicus style. One chamber of the vessel is in the form of a female figure holding a baby. The gesture of holding the baby directly in front of and away from herself is generally interpreted as presentation. Both the mother and child figures exhibit characteristically Ayabeca facial features within a triangular shaped head such as squinty, coffee bean eyes, hawk-like nose, squarely protruding ears, and slightly upturned mouth formed by a single incise line, endowing them with a serene countenance. The back of the mother's head is perforated with a series of small holes indicating that it once functioned as a whistling vessel. Various examples of Vicus pottery are illustrated and discussed by Donnan, Christopher, Ceramics of Ancient Peru (1992).
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