Description This highly polished ceramic work is both a sculpture and a functional vessel. It shows a seated man who sits, hands on knees, contemplating the viewer. He wears an elaborate collar or necklace, and may represent a shaman or warrior, due to his horned helmet. While the meaning of this vessel is somewhat elusive, these ceramics in general were used as grave offerings in the shaft tombs of West Mexico. There, families worked hard to build deep shafts from 10-30 feet into the ground, building burial chambers for their ancestors. They would be filled with replicas of food and family.
Provenance Stendahl Galleries, Los Angeles [date and mode of acquisition unknown]; John G. Bourne, 1940s, by purchase; by bequest to Walters Art Museum, 2017.
Credit Bequest of John G. Bourne, 2017
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