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HOME : Pre-Columbian Art : Mayan Cylindrical Vases : Mayan Babilonia Painted Cylindrical Vessel
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Mayan Babilonia Painted Cylindrical Vessel - DA.383
Origin: Honduras
Circa: 300 AD to 900 AD
Dimensions: 7.75" (19.7cm) high x 9.7" (24.6cm) wide
Collection: Pre-Columbian
Medium: Terracotta

Location: UAE
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The vessel is a cylindrical shape, slightly tapering at the bottom and with amorphous animal heads protruding from the sides of the pot, one on each side to form stylized handles. Unobservable from the face view, the base is somewhat indented to form an integral stand. The pot is decorated with complex geometric intermingling of figures contained within a central oval cartouche.

A spread-eagled bird of prey can be seen atop the head of a noble dignitary or priest. The eagle is most probably a headdress connoting significant importance. However the depiction is so lifelike that one may assume that it is a live entity in its own right which then implies greater spiritual significance on the image and its host, the pot. The images are outlined in strong but delicately executed brown black outlines and shading and accentuated by deep terracotta red highlights. The highlights bring the painting to life and actually appear to indicate some form of life-force by their proximity, for example to the mouth of the human figure. He appears to be either breathing out or ingesting the energy thus indicated.

The same image is repeated on the reverse of the vessel again within an oval, cartouche but with a varying level of abstraction. The central images are framed above and below with a row of stylized symbols, highlighted in terracotta red and black-brown shading.

This item has been carefully restored since the taking of the pictures on the website. - (DA.383)


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