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HOME : Pre-Columbian Art : Terracotta Trophy Heads : Guanacaste-Nicoya Blackware Trophy Head
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Guanacaste-Nicoya Blackware Trophy Head - PF.3475
Origin: Guanacaste-Nicoya Zone, Costa Rica
Circa: 1000 AD to 1350 AD
Dimensions: 10.25" (26.0cm) high
Collection: Pre-Columbian
Medium: Terracotta

Location: United States
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The artist of this grayish-brown effigy vessel has created an intensely carved piece of art in which there are beautiful geometric patterns and symbols. The neck of the vessel is the crown this effigy wears. It is full of lavish decoration and intertwining curvilinear shapes. These shapes are again repeated on the back of this vessel, to eternalize this effigy. The intertwining lines show that life and death coexist peacefully in this culture. This effigy was most probably used in ceremonies of worship. The holes in the ears create a sense of realism that this effigy can hear as well as see and smell. The distinct sense of realism occurs in these facial features. The dimensional ridge at the crown of this face is probably a symbol for majesty, a higher level of life and power. Through the careful carvings and precise detail we are in awe of the power this effigy holds before us. The geometry and patterning illustrate the symbolism within the Costa Rican culture. - (PF.3475)


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