Pre-Columbian, Mesoamerican Formative Period, Guerrero State, Mexico, Xochipala culture, ca. 13th to 10th century BCE. A remarkable collection of 27 ceramic figures, made at a very early date, all found together in a single cache. These figures show a multitude of lifelike poses and figures, with many more women than men represented. They are standing, sitting, holding children, in ecstasy or pain, each dressed in a unique outfit with varied jewelry and coiffures - each looks like an individual, as if based on someone who the sculptor knew in life. Cinnabar red pigment is still present on many of the figures. You will easily spend hours examining the incredible details of each. Each comes with a custom wooden stand. Size of largest: 4.25" H (10.8 cm); 5.2" H (13.2 cm) on included custom stand.
Xochipala figures, while rare, are noted for their naturalistic poses and attention to detail, despite their early date in the Mesoamerican ceramic tradition. Unlike the Olmec, who seem to have deliberately abstracted human figures, perhaps to remove them from the quotidian world, the artisans of Xochipala seemed intent on creating the most naturalistic representations possible.
Provenance: private southern California, USA collection, acquired in the 1970s to mid-1980s
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Most are repaired from a few large pieces, with breaks at the legs and necks most common. These repairs are well done and generally unobtrusive. Some are missing limbs, but overall most seem to have all of their components present. One is on a broken base.