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    Description

    A Rare and Important Chavin Figural Mortar
    c. 900-400 BC

    A large piece of mottled lapis/sodalite with red pigment (probably cinnabar) rubbed into grooves. Finely carved to depict a standing figure holding a bowl on its head with its right hand and the left hand held to its rump. The hair in braids transforming to snake heads which is a typical attribute of the shaman during Chavine times. Wearing a necklace and tunic decorated with circles which refers to the shamanic jaguar. The feet well-carved depicting toes. The bowl has a funnel-shaped cavity, and was probably used to pulverize hallucinogens or other medicines. In excellent condition, with original archeological patina, shell eyes restored consistent with the style of the time and area. With a custom lucite base.

    Provenance:
    Robert & Carolyn Nelson Collection
    David Bernstein Fine Art, New York, NY

    Note: a similar figure is published in Pre-Columbian Art of South America, by Alan Lapiner, Abrams, New York, 1976, page 51. See also: Chavin and the Origins of Andean Civilization, by Richard L. Burger, Thames & Hudson, London, 1992, page 211. "Valuable lightweight goods were exchanged over great distances for the personal consumption of local elites. They [the Chavin people] acquired lapis lazuli from sources in the Moquegua valley in the far south coast of Peru and the Atacama desert of northern Chile."

    Height: 5 inches




    Condition Report*: Condition report available upon request.
    *Heritage Auctions strives to provide as much information as possible but encourages in-person inspection by bidders. Statements regarding the condition of objects are only for general guidance and should not be relied upon as complete statements of fact, and do not constitute a representation, warranty or assumption of liability by Heritage. Some condition issues may not be noted in the condition report but are apparent in the provided photos which are considered part of the condition report. Please note that we do not de-frame lots estimated at $1,000 or less and may not be able to provide additional details for lots valued under $500. All lots are sold "AS IS" under the Terms & Conditions of Auction.

    Auction Info

    Auction Dates
    June, 2019
    25th Tuesday
    Bids + Registered Phone Bidders: 2
    Lot Tracking Activity: N/A
    Page Views: 580

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