"Western Mexico, Jalisco Culture, 300 Bc - 300 Ad, Important Anthropomorphic Statuette"
Origin: Western Mexico
Period: Protoclassical 300 BC - 300 AD
Dimensions: 25.6 x 18.7 cm
Condition: Restoration on the right arm, surface wear Traces of polychromy on the back of the subject
Provenance: Former private collection of the 80s'
Note that the piece has a lighter shade than
the digital processing of the image suggests
The statuette represents a seated woman wearing a loincloth, her chest bare. It is characterized by atrophied upper limbs and short but massive legs. The broad and stocky body receives a chest with breasts projected forward. The powerful shoulders are punctuated with conical growths that could resemble ritual scars, or according to some researchers, to body ornamentation made up of shells. The hands are positioned parallel to the ground, the fingers apart. The face of disproportionate proportions slightly tilted to the left, is a classic of the Jalisco culture (here in Ezatlán style): protruding almond-shaped eyes enclosed in thick eyelids, long straight nose, mouth with detailed lips, ears in the shape of a flag. The skull ritually deformed backwards accommodates a headdress surrounded by a band of braids crossed in its center. The subject contains clay balls placed inside acting as cowbells.
This kind of statuette from the Jalisco Culture, like the Colima and Nayarit peoples, comes from well tombs that developed in Western Mexico between 100 BC and 250 AD. These cultures had the particularity of building tombs under their homes, a long vertical shaft then connecting the surface to the family vault which could contain many burials. The offerings of the well tombs were made of ceramic statuettes offering to our eyes a wide panorama of the customs of this period.