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HOME : Pre-Columbian Art : Casas Grandes Art : Casas Grandes Terracotta Polychrome Pot
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Casas Grandes Terracotta Polychrome Pot - PF.2351
Origin: Casas Grandes, Mexico
Circa: 1160 AD to 1260 AD
Dimensions: 6.875" (17.5cm) high
Collection: Pre-Columbian
Medium: Terracotta

Location: United States
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The ancient inhabitants of the site of Casas Grandes, located in Mexico close to the border with New Mexico, produced some of the most exquisite pottery of the southwest, as evidenced in this stunning polychrome pot. The city of Casas Grandes was a center of commerce and trade. Here warehouses were discovered filled with large quantities of shells, paint pigments and turquoise. It is believed that their local turquoise was traded with the inhabitants of Central Mexico for tropical birds, for the Pueblo Indians had deep ritual need for feathers from birds such as the parrot and macaw since these avian creatures symbolized fertility. This reverence for exotic birds is hinted at in the geometric motifs of Casas Grandes pottery. Linear designs on this stunning pot evoke the striking patterns of bird feathers and beaks. The worship of the feathered serpent was also an integral part of Casas Grandes culture and is represented in their pottery. The meandering line of this pot boldly suggests the slithering movement of the serpent's body. It is obvious from the sensitive and artistic rendering of this vessel that the Casas Grandes people had a deep awareness of nature, its visual expression through their pottery creating a window into the realm of the natural spirits. - (PF.2351)


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