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HOME : Pre-Columbian Art : Art of Costa Rica : Polychrome Pedestal Bowl
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Polychrome Pedestal Bowl - PF.3212
Origin: Costa Rica (Guanacaste)
Circa: 1200 AD to 1550 AD
Dimensions: 9.75" (24.8cm) high
Collection: Pre-Columbian
Medium: Terracotta

Location: United States
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This vessel is a masterpiece of composition seen through the patterns of shapes and colors. The geometry, coloration, and bold creature make this work of art a fanciful interpretation of the natural world. The people of Costa Rica not only worshipped the crocodile for its power, but were afraid of the beast's mystery. A fantastically clawed, feathered, crocodile-like creature, this Central American artist shows us his interpretation of the omnipotent animal; receiving the dead and the gods as they slip below the horizon line into another world. This creature is framed with feathers, showing its ritual importance. The similar patterns above and below the animal shows us the two different worlds of life. The hues of red, orange, black, and creme are rich in symbolism, and the geometric patterns demonstrate how mysterious the crocodile is to the Costa Rican culture. - (PF.3212)


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