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HOME : Pre-Columbian Art : Costa Rican Animal Sculptures : Terracotta Sculpture of a Jaguar
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Terracotta Sculpture of a Jaguar - PF.4392
Origin: Costa Rica
Circa: 500 AD to 800 AD
Dimensions: 6.5" (16.5cm) high
Collection: Pre-Columbian
Medium: Terracotta


Location: United States
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Description
Throughout Central and South America the jaguar was regarded with superstition and awe. For centuries a widespread religion existed based on a feline deity as its cult figure. The jaguar was a powerful god, perhaps the most powerful, and was often represented in various objects. However, few could have equaled this magnificent specimen. Every aspect of this work of art proclaims the artist's skill. The jaguar is in a crouching pose, with its back arched, having just made a kill. The deer in its mouth is cleverly diminished in size to make the jaguar seem larger than life. Yet, the realism is very impressive. Both animals are given extensive realistic detail- the deer has delicate horns and its mouth is open in pain. The jaguar has black spots of different sizes on a ground of reddish- tan depicting its coat. There is movement in its static pose, as if the violent act of feeding is still palpable in the air. The artist of this sculpture has left a permanent record of his veneration for his art and respect for the mighty jaguar. HT. 16.5cm(6 1/2IN) : L. 43.2cm(17IN) - (PF.4392)

 

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