Pre-Columbian, Southern Mexico/Guatemala, Olmec, ca. 1150 to 500 BCE. A finely carved jadeite seated figure, with hands placed upon upraised knees, a broad torso, and his head dramatically cocked back to look upward into the celestial realm. His characteristically elongated head (misshapen due to artificial cranial deformation practiced by the Olmec peoples) presents traditional Olmec babyface features such as slanted eyes, jowly cheeks, a full nose, and a downturned were-jaguar mouth. In addition to this powerful iconography, the inherent beauty of the jade is quite striking. Size: 1.75" H (4.4 cm); 2.625" H (6.7 cm) on included custom stand.
The first major civilization in Meso-America was that of the Olmec, established in the tropical lowlands of south-central Mexico around 1500 BCE. The Olmec were very advanced, creating monumental architecture, colossal statuary, as well as a sophisticated aristocracy that enjoyed fine objects made from obsidian and jade like this example.
Provenance: private Southern California, USA collection, acquired in the 1970s to mid-1980s
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