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HOME : Pre-Columbian Art : Tlaloc Effigy Vessels : Tlaloc Effigy Tripod Vessel
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Tlaloc Effigy Tripod Vessel - PF.4662
Origin: Costa Rica
Circa: 500 AD to 1000 AD
Dimensions: 10" (25.4cm) high
Collection: Pre-Columbian
Medium: Terracotta


Location: United States
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Description
Beautifully decorated for an important ritual function, this powerful vessel combines the creative workmanship of the artist as well as the functionality required for many essential tasks. Each leg contains an opening at the mid-section, enhancing the detailed decoration. The decoration itself covers a large area; combining banded geometric patterning with fluid freestanding and connected forms. The back leg holds a beautiful image of a jaguar, an important animal in Ancient Costa Rica legends and rituals. Smooth to touch, the beautiful earthenware, maintained by decorations in warm earth tones, creates a subtlety in the piece, which makes it even more fascinating. The sculpted face in the front however, is the most important part of the vessel. A combination of man and jaguar, the life in the expression is truly incredible. With the mouth partly open and the tongue protruding, tremendous vivacity and power is exuded from this face. Elaborate braids of hair surround it. The eyes protrude and are highlighted by dark brown, creating a more penetrating effect. The artistic power and passion continues with the folds created around the nose and the sharp teeth emanating from the upper portion of the mouth, which leads directly to the bulbous tongue and the deep red lower lip. The top of the vessel curves delicately into the vessel, creating an overall smoothness in design and texture. To further round off the piece the upper arms rest delicately on the upper portion of the two legs in front, therefore creating a truly well rounded and beautiful piece. Its function within a ritual ceremony would have varied slightly, yet would have remained very important. And now we are part of its new future, destined to prolong its life by our fascination with the past and our desire to learn more and become part of the vessel's history. - (PF.4662)

 

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