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Standing Female Figure
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Standing Female Figure

Description Conservation Exhibitions Provenance Credit
Description The Lagunillas style of southern Nayarit comprises five different subgroups of these remarkable human sculptures. The "C" type is distinguished by triangular heads that are broad across the forehead and taper to a delicate, pointed chin. Face and body painting is common, and when present, clothing is rendered as highly decorated fabric. This figure is a particularly fine example of the "C" type, notable for exuberant face painting, which combines geometric lines with curvilinear forms. Rather than a symmetrical and rather static design covering the entire face, each side features distinct patterns. The formalized pose of hands framing the abdomen, accentuated thighs, and erect breasts suggest sexual maturity and reproductive fecundity.

Both of the standing female figures were handmade, with evidence of clay modeling seen with x-rays as variations in the thickness of the clay walls. Their heads, bodies, and legs are hollow, whereas their ears and arms are solid clay. The Walters collaborated with the Ceramics Department of the Maryland Institute College of Art (MICA) to re-create the process by which these hollow, hand modeled sculptures were made.

  • Art of Ancient America, 1500 B.C.-1400 A.D.. Museum of New Mexico, Santa Fe. 1998-2008.
  • Exploring Art of the Ancient Americas: The John Bourne Collection Gift. The Walters Art Museum, Baltimore; Frist Center for the Visual Arts, Nashville. 2012-2013.
Provenance Stendahl Galleries, Los Angeles [date and mode of acquisition unknown]; John G. Bourne, 1960s, by purchase; Walters Art Museum, 2009, by gift.
Credit Gift of John Bourne, 2009

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300 BC-AD 200
burnished, slip-paint earthenware
Accession Number
H: 15 3/16 x W: 7 3/8 x D: 3 15/16 in. (38.5 x 18.7 x 10 cm)
Location Within Museum
Not On View


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