Apolonia Ancient Art offers ancient Greek, Roman, Egyptian, and Pre-Columbian works of art Apolonia Ancient Art
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Pottery : Pre AD 1000 item #1198713
Apolonia Ancient Art
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This cute little piece is a Nazca figurine that dates circa 200-500 A.D. This piece is approximately 6 inches high, and is in mint condition with no over paint and/or restoration. This charming piece is a rounded seated figurine with modeled legs and arms and cupped hands. This figure is seen wearing a feathered headdress tied up in a central knot, and has decorative tattoos on each shoulder in the form of a stylized fish (shark?) on the right shoulder, and on the left shoulder, a possible stylized bird image. This piece has a very animated expression, and is seen with a small rounded mouth in the form of a circle, and wide open rounded eyes. This piece is also portrayed as being bare chested, as there are two small rounded red dotted breasts. There is a small spout at the top, and a strap handle at the back. This piece also has vibrant polychrome glaze in beige, brown, black, and cream colors. Ex: Sotheby's Pre-Columbian Art, New York, Nov. 1996, no. 204. ($1,500.00-$2,500.00 estimates, $1,495.00 realized.) Ex: Private New York collection. I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Metalwork : Pre AD 1000 item #1226590
Apolonia Ancient Art
$8,765.00
This powerful piece is a Chimu culture silver mask that dates circa Late Intermediate Period, 1000-1400 A.D. This piece is likely from the Lambayeque Valley, Peru, and is approximately 11.75 inches wide by 6 inches high by 1.2 inches in relief. This piece is a silver with added copper metal combination with an applied coat of spotty red cinnabar than runs through the flat center section of the piece. This intact piece has a "box-type" nose construction, and is attached to the main body of the piece with folded over tabs. There are decorative small hand beaten rounded dot patterns, that are seen at each end of the ear sections, and these ear sections also show a rounded design which resemble ear spools. These main body of this piece is divided into three sections, and the middle section is the nose and "line-formed" mouth which is the focus of this piece, and the eyes seen in each of the two outer sections, frame the entire compact design of the face. On the back side of this piece, there are some textile remains seen between the main body of the piece and the "box-type" constructed nose section. This piece covered a "mummy-bundle" which was also wrapped in textiles, and this piece was likely wrapped around the face of the mummy along with additional textile wrapping. Depending on the status and wealth of the deceased, these Chimu masks could be of ceramic, of wood, or even cloth, but those of the most powerful were of gold and silver. This piece also has a dark gray patina, with several minute spotty black mineral deposits. Another analogous example of nearly the same size can be seen in Bonham's African, Oceanic, and Pre-Columbian Art, Nov.2013, no. 33. ($4,000.00-$6,000.00 estimates, $11,875.00 realised.) This piece is also mounted within a black wooden shadow box, and clear Velcro tabs securely hold it into place which attaches this piece to the black backing. Ex: Private German collection, circa 1970's. Note: Additional documentation is available to the purchaser. I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Stone : Pre AD 1000 item #1245720
Apolonia Ancient Art
$3,265.00
This striking piece is a carved stone sculpture that is attributed to the Recuay culture, Early Intermediate Period, circa 400 B.C.-300 A.D. This piece is a solid stone piece that is approximately 4.5 inches long, by 3.4 inches wide, by 2.8 inches high. This piece is a dark brown color, and has minute dark black and spotty white mineral deposits. In addition, there are faint traces of red cinnabar deposits that are seen in the low relief areas of the rounded eyes and incised teeth. This piece is an excellent example of Recuay stone sculpture, as it has sharp angular or circular lines, and flat surfaces. The Recuay culture was a highland contemporary of the Moche, and was organized into small independent militaristic polities, and their art often depicted creatures that seen to be supernatural in character. The head seen here is a supernatural feline with ears seen at the top, and a wide mouth with prominent angular designed teeth. The circular eyes, open mouth filled with teeth, and angular flat nose seen at the front, identify this creature which is often referred to as the "moon animal", because of it's association with crescents and other celestial imagery in the coeval Moche style. The so-called "moon animal", a feline or foxlike creature with a triangular form of nose projecting from its face, plays a principle role in Recuay art and is common on fine Recuay pottery. (For an analogous piece and an explanation of the "moon animal", see the "Spirit of Ancient Peru; Treasures from the Museo Arqueologico Rafael Larco Herrara", Thames and Hudson Pub., New York, 1977, no. 24, p. 93. See attached photo.) This piece offered here also reflects the Recuay monolithic stone sculpture that was free-standing or incorporated into masonry walls, and was carved so that its undecorated shaftlike back could be inserted into a wall socket while the carved supernatural visage projected out of the wall in tenonlike fashion. This type of artistic design allowed the viewer to see a piece that "comes alive" in a simplistic fashion, and as such, this piece has a high degree of eye appeal. This splendid stone piece is mounted on a custom wooden and Plexiglas stand, and is angled upwards for the viewer. Ex: Splendors of the World Gallery, Los Angeles, CA., circa 1990's. Ex: Private New York collection. Ex: Private German collection. Note: Additional documentation is available to the purchaser. I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Pottery : Pre AD 1000 item #1207767
Apolonia Ancient Art
$4,675.00
This scarce Pre-Columbian piece is a Mayan cylinder vessel that dates Late Classic, circa 550-950 A.D. This attractive piece is approximately 7 inches high by 4.9 inches in diameter. This superb to mint quality vessel is a "Molded Orangeware Vessel", El Salvador region, that has mold made impressions seen within two box-shaped fields seen on each side of the vessel. Each box-shaped field has a standing Mayan priest/dignitary holding an elongated rectangular object in his extended right hand, and the other panel shows this rectangular object hanging on the right elbow of this standing individual. This standing Mayan priest/dignitary is also seen within both panels with his head placed within a raptorial beaked bird, which may represent a sacred "Moan Bird", and this raptorial beaked bird is likely a ceremonial headdress. This individual is also seen wearing royal ear flares and bracelets, has a water-lily emerging from his lips, and is wearing a sashed lioncloth. There is also a stippled woven mat pattern seen in the background, and the overall composition on both panels have very sharp details and is better than most examples. In addition, each panel shows this standing individual in a slightly different position, and this design conveys a slight movement of this individual, as one views this exceptional piece from panel to panel. This convention of art relative to Mayan ceramics, is generally seen on scarce to rare Mayan molded vessels of this type. This intact piece also has some attractive light gray burnishing, some minute root marking, and spotty dotted black mineral deposits. An analogous example is seen in Sotheby's Pre-Columbian Art, New York, Nov. 24, 1986, no. 127. ($1,500.00-$2,500.00 estimates, $2,750.00 realized. See attached photo.) Ex: Private CA. collection, circa 1980's. Ex: Private CA. collection. I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Pottery : Pre AD 1000 item #1022403
Apolonia Ancient Art
$1,275.00
This interesting piece is an Olmecoid standing figurine that dates circa 600-300 B.C. This piece is approximately 6 inches high, is a light tan clay, and has a thin light tan to clear polychrome glaze. This piece is intact, and has a solid body and a mold made hollow head, which was attached in antiquity. This figure is seen with both arms at the side, and the hands are positioned at the front holding a paunchy stomach, which indicates that this piece is a fertility and/or mother goddess. In addition, the lower torso is "pear" shaped and has wide hips. This piece also has many classic Olmec artistic style features such as the jaguar-like ears, eyes, and mouth. These features are a combination of human and animal, which are classified as "transformation art", which is a principle stylistic hallmark of Olmec art from central Mexico. This type of Middle Preclassic period fertility figurine has been found in Izapa (Mexico), Kaminaljuyu (Guatemala), and Chalchuapa (El Salvador); and has also been classified as the "Mamom" artistic style, which was produced by a "pre-Mayan" and/or Mayan culture. (For the "Mamom" artistic style, see "Maya, Treasures of an Ancient Civilization", Harry Abrams, Inc. Pub., New York, 1985, pp. 74-75.) This piece is scarce in this intact condition, as most pieces of this type are found broken, and is a much better example than what is normally seen on the market. This piece can also stand by itself. This piece comes with a custom stand, and can easily be removed. Ex: Julio Atalah collection, circa 1940-1967. Ex: Danny Hall collection, Houston, TX., circa 1967-2005. Ex: Saida Cebero collection, Sugarland, TX., circa 2005-2009. Ex: Private Florida collection. I certify that this pice is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Metalwork : Pre AD 1000 item #1113765
Apolonia Ancient Art
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This rare piece is a silver Inka Empire atlatl thumb grip, which is an important component of a wooden atlatl. This piece dates circa 1450-1550 A.D., and is approximately 1.1 inches wide by 1.5 inches high. This x-rare to rare piece was cast in silver, and was then hammered into its present form. This piece has a bar at the bottom that was imbedded into a round wooden rod, and then was tied into place. This round wooden rod, known as an atlatl, had a slot that ran down the center which held a spear. (See attached photo of an atlatl which is seen in the Museo de Oro, Lima. Approximately 20.5 inches long.) The atlatl was a weapon that was an important addition to the Royal Inka army, as it enabled the thrower of the spear to more than double the throwing distance of the spear. The atlatl placed additional torque to the back end of the spear, and the thump grip enabled the holder of the atlatl to transfer more power into the act of the throwing the spear. The thumb was the last contact point on the atlantl on the hand of the thrower, and the addition of the thumb grip enhanced the power of the atlantl a great deal. This weapon was one of the principle reasons that enabled the Inka Empire to expand as rapidly as it did, and as this piece is made from silver, this piece was likely made for the Inka Imperial Army. Most of these thumb grips are simple wooden pegs, or are sometimes found in bronze. (For some additional bronze examples see: "Peru Durch de Jahrtausende, Kunst Und Kultur Im Lande Der Inka", by Ferdinand Anders, Verlag Aurel Bongers Pub., 1984, nos. 12.60-12.62. See attached photo.) The piece offered here has a face that has a feathered crest at the top, and the upper portion of this piece is slightly turned to one side to accommodate the thumb of a right-handed thrower. This piece is a complete example and has no repair/restoration. This piece also has a nice dark gray patina, has a great deal of eye appeal, and was authenticated by Mr. Robert Sonin, New York. A custom wooden display stand is included. Ex: Joe Rose collection, New York, circa 1970's. Ex: Private New York collection. I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Pre AD 1000 item #1276371
Apolonia Ancient Art
$8,675.00
This extra large Mayan tripod plate dates circa 600-900 A.D., and is approximately 15.75 inches in diameter by 4 inches high. This piece has been attributed to the Peten region of the Yucatan Peninsula, and is an exceptional example for the type. This appealing piece has very vibrant dark orange/red, white, black, and light blue/gray colors. This piece has three legs, along with an esoteric upward sloping bowl which has the multi-colored polychrome glaze on the top inner side of the vessel, and a light brown terracotta on the underside of the vessel. This piece has a "serpent band" that is seen running around the inner edge of the plate, and this has two symbols that alternate and appear to interlock within the design. These symbols may be celestial in nature, and frame the Mayan cartouche glyph that is seen in the field in the center of the plate. This Mayan cartouche glyph also has an inner central glyph, which resembles a face with an open mouth. This glyph is the Mayan glyph "Ajaw", meaning "lord". According to Dr. Mark Van Stone, Professor of Art History, Southwestern College, and noted Maya expert specializing in Mayan hieroglyphs and calligraphy, who also co-authored the book "Reading the Maya Glyphs", commented the following regarding this piece: "Now, that date in the center is pretty unusal. It recalls the Ajaw Alters we find at Caracol and some other sites: a round alter with a text encircling a huge Ajaw date, which marks the "name" (the last day) of a "Period Ending" (usually a K'atun-end). It is a normal "Ajaw" day sign in its normal cartouche, surmounted by a numeral 13, to read "13 Ajaw", a date of important augury, as 13 was the number with the most power, and a period-ending on "13 Ajaw" was really significant. (It was the date chosen by Carl Johan Calleman for his calculation of the "End of the World"-11th Oct. 2011, in contrast to the more popular "4 Ajaw PE"-21st Dec. 2012.) In any event, it's perfectly legible, and the kind of thing that would be learned first by a student scribe." This scarce to rare piece has a cartouche date glyph that is a marker to an important event, and/or refers to an event in the Mayan calendar, and the cartouche date glyph seen on this piece is a significant example, as noted above by Dr. Mark Van Stone. The number "13", associated with the cartouche date glyph, is easily seen and represented by two bars and three dots that are attached to the top of the cartouche date glyph. This piece has some minor repair/crack fill from three large fragments, and is 99-100% original. There is also some attractive root marking seen in various sections of the piece, along with some minute black spotty mineral deposits. This piece is a large and rare Mayan plate with extremely rare symbols and is seldom seen on the market. Ex: Private German collection, circa 1970's. A TL authenticity test is available from Gutachten Lab, Germany, no. 18611, dated Jan. 7th, 1986. (Note: Additional documentation is available to the purchaser.) I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Pottery : Pre AD 1000 item #809739
Apolonia Ancient Art
$1,275.00
This superb ceramic is from the Moche culture that dwelled in northern Peru and dates circa 50-200 A.D. This piece is classified as being Moche I period, circa 50-200 A.D., due to the design of the stirrup spout that has a thick lip. The Moche ceramics from this period often have a cream colored glaze with red highlights, as this vessel also displays. This intact piece is approximately 8 inches high and is in superb condition, with no over paint, repair, and/or restoration. There is also a small pebble inside this ceramic, and this vessel may have served as a ceremonial rattle. This cute piece has a vibrant red line-designed lizard seen on both sides, and there are red dots that surround each lizard. These red dots represent seeds of the acacia tree, which are closely related to the hallucinogenic anadenanthera colubrina, which are believed to have powerful medicinal properties. The lizards that are native to the desert scrub brush land of northern Peru subsist exclusively on these seeds, and its thought the Moche consumed these lizards believing that they would derive the benefits of the acacia seeds. (For the ceramic type see "Moche Art of Peru" by Christopher Donnan, University of California, 1978, page 142.) The lizard was also a creature worthy of depiction, as lizards shed their skins, and this trait makes them symbolic of regeneration. This piece is an interesting work of Moche line-designed art that is not often seen on the market in this superb condition. Ex: Private CA. collection. Ex: Arte Textil, San Francisco, CA. I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Pottery : Pre AD 1000 item #1088689
Apolonia Ancient Art
Price on Request
This extremely rare piece is an attractive canteen type vessel that has been classified as Nazca culture, circa 500-600 A.D. This piece is approximately 7 inches high by 8.75 inches wide, has a small raised opening, and is heart shaped. This piece also stands by itself, as it has a flat bottom, and is very easy to handle with both hands due to it's "V-shaped" design. This esoteric "V-shaped" piece has a beautiful dark red glaze, and may have been designed to represent a human heart. In addition, this piece has a small extended central top spout, which somewhat resembles a blood vessel for a heart. This piece also has two lug handles, seen on each side of the vessel, and these handles were made in order to suspend the vessel. The suspension of this vessel acted as an aid for one in the careful pouring of a liquid, and as such, this vessel was probably created for ceremonial use. It is also possible that, given the heart shape, the handle design, and the dark red color of this esoteric piece, the liquid contained within this vessel may have been human blood which was used for ceremony. This piece was also lavishly published with a full page color photo in "Art of the Andes, Pre-Columbian Sculptured and Painted Ceramics from the Arthur M. Sackler Collections" by Paul Clifford and Elizabeth Benson, The Arthur M. Sackler Foundation and The AMS Foundation for the Arts, Sciences, and Humanities, Washington D.C. publishers, 1983, no. 143. The following description of this piece is seen in the above publication on page 268: "The widest area of this kidney-shaped canteen is at the top. Its short spout has a thickened rim, and loop handles are attached to the sides just below the shoulder. The entire vessel is painted with a red slip. Such a vessel shape does not appear in any of the literature, but there is a similar piece in a New York collection known to the author. (The following is a footnote relative to the New York example: "Seen while on loan to the Duke University Museum.") The surface color and finish are comparable to the Nazca panpipes in Number 142 (See attached photo.), and the bottle is therefore included with the Nazca material, although actual provenance is not known. The minimum age indicated in the thermoluminescence analysis indicates that the piece was fired in antiquity, but does not provide any basis of dating beyond that minimum age. Further technical measurements, such as trace element analysis of the clay and analysis of the slip with which the vessel was painted may, in the future, provide a method for establishing provenance, if comparisons can be made with similar analysis of other objects". (The following is a footnote regarding the two thermoluminescence (TL) tests that were performed on this piece by the Sackler Foundation: "OX-TL reference no. 381f1, 02/08/83 and 05/26/83 estimates that the sample tested has a minimum age of 470 years according to results of two TL tests, one to analyze fading.") The bottom of the piece has an inventory no. N-110, and there are two minute holes which indicate where the two above TL tests were taken. This intact piece is also in mint condition, and has an even glaze that is a brilliant deep red color. This extremely rare piece is also one of the top esoteric vessels, if not the most esoteric vessel offered by the Sackler Foundation. Ex: Arthur M. Sackler collection, accession no. N-110. I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Pottery : Pre AD 1000 item #1260877
Apolonia Ancient Art
$4,675.00
This scarce piece is a Mayan ceramic that dates circa 600-900 A.D. This piece is approximately 7 inches long, by 4.5 inches high, and is in superb intact condition with only a few minute abrasions. This piece also has an attractive orange and light brown polychrome glaze, with some heavy and spotty black mineral deposits. This interesting vessel is in the form of a sitting rabbit, and has all four legs tucked under the body. There is also a single rattle that is built into the animated hollow head, and rattles of this type are normally seen in the rounded hollow legs of select Mayan tripod vessels. This appealing vessel is designed to sit horizontally as a rabbit would be at rest, and also upright, as if the rabbit is raised up on it's hind legs. In addition, there are three suspension holes, one under each front leg, and one that runs through the head. This allowed one to control a liquid that could then be poured from the raised hole that is seen on the upper back of the rabbit. This piece also has a black Mayan mat symbol which is painted on the belly of the rabbit. The rabbit, for the Maya, was a deity associated with scribal or artistic roles, and was the patron god of the Mayan scribe. According to Michael Coe in "The Art of the Maya Scribe", Abrams Pub., New York, 1998, p. 110: "The much illustrated little Rabbit God writing a codex on the Princeton Vase makes only one showing as a scribe in the art of the classic Maya. He must be the same rabbit that the Maya saw on the face of the moon, and is iconographically linked with the Moon Goddess, who often is depicted holding him in her arms." The piece offered here may represent a scribe as a rabbit, but more likely it represents the "Rabbit God" himself, who also doubles as the patron god of the Mayan scribes. This vessel may also have been a "paint pot" for a Mayan scribe and/or it may also have been a votive vessel for an important individual such as a Mayan scribe. The artistic style of the painted black Mayan mat seen on this piece, is also analogous to the painted mats seen on "Copador" type vessels. The name "Copador" is a contraction of Copan and El Salvador, and refers to the zone of distribution for this type of vessel. This piece may also refer to the 13th ruler of Copan, "18 Rabbit", who acceded to the throne circa 695 A.D., and ruled for 43 years. Under his rule in Copan, Copan's population was growing as never before, and the "Copador" polychrome ware was being manufactured and distributed over a wide area in the Mayan world. This energetic ruler erected many monuments, including one of the largest ballcourts (Ballcourt A-III), which was second only to the Great Court at Chichen Itza. Linda Schele also felt that this ruler was also the greatest single patron of the arts in Copan's history, based on the number of works and the high-relief style of carving. (See "Scribes, Warriors, and Kings", by William Fash, Thames and Hudson Pub., 1991, p. 125.) Hence, it's quite possible that the vessel offered here also referred to this ruler of Copan, in addition to representing the "Rabbit God" of the Mayan scribes. This piece is a rare intact Mayan vessel designed in animal form, and full bodied Mayan "animal form" type ceramics are seldom seen on the market. Ex: William Freeman estate, New Mexico, circa 1960's-1980's. Ex: Private AZ. collection. I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Pottery : Pre AD 1000 item #853880
Apolonia Ancient Art
$4,675.00
This rare vessel is from the Moche culture, that dwelled in modern day northern Peru, dates circa 500-700 A.D. and is from the Moche IV phase of ceramic development. This piece is intact with no repair/restoration, is in superb condition, and is approximately 8.25 inches high. This red-brown and cream colored ceramic is a rare piece, as it is a type of vessel known as a "sacrificial rite vessel". This piece has six figures on the vessel including a Moche standing owl deity seen at the center, a sea lion, a cormorant, a hooded male figure, an ocean skate(?), and a crab. All of the five figures that run around the main body of this stirrup-type vessel are all seen emerging from the background, and may represent their emerging into or from the spirit world. These figures are seen in high relief from the main body of the vessel, as they were individually mold made, and this production process took a great deal of skill and time relative to intregrating these images into the production of this ceramic. The standing owl deity seen at the center, which may also represent a priest in costume, is also the Moche deity that is seen in the "Presentation Theme", which is a Moche ceremony of sacrifice as defined by Christopher Donnan. (See "Moche Art of Peru" by Christopher Donnan, University of California, Los Angeles, CA., 1978, pp.158-174.) This Moche owl deity, seen in the "Presentation Theme" as defined by Donnan which is also identified as "Figure B", is a priest seen in an owl-hooded costume holding a goblet with blood from the sacrifice. There are also other known Moche ceramic vessels that portray this figure, as seen in the work noted above (Nos. 248 and 271.). The owl was sacred to the Moche because of it's night vision and sharp hunting skills at night, and because of their nocturnal nature, they were associated with death and were thought to travel between the living and spirit world. There are examples of Moche ceramics with a captive tied to the back of the owl, and this may represent the owl carrying the captive to the other world. The standing owl, seen in combination with the five figures that run around the main body of this vessel, are all related to Moche ceremony and sacrifice. The active red-brown sea lion depicted on this piece shows several round objects, seen at the front of the eye and on the stomach area, and are round stones that the sea lions frequently cough up when they are hunted. These stones were considered sacred by the Moche and were thought to have extremely powerful medicinal properties. The lively artistic style of the sea lion is exceptional, and has a great deal of expression. The hooded male figure, seen at the front of the vessel, may represent a sacrificial victim. It is interesting to note that one of the owl's feet appear to grip and morph into the hood that is seen on the male figure that is placed just below the body of the owl. The crab is also interesting in that the crab has anthropomorphized human-like eyes. The owl is also thought to represent the "magical flight" ecstatic trance state that was performed by Moche shamans and priests. The owl seen on this vessel also has a human designed eye, and may represent a shaman and/or priest in costume, or is in a state of transformation. (This ecstatic trance state was first described in 1638 by Antonio de la Calancha, in the historical Spanish document "Cornica Moralizada del Orden de San Augustin en el Peru, Con Sucesos Egemplares an esta Monarquia", Barcelona, Spain.) The ceramic offered here may represent the owl as presiding over the Moche sacrifices that are offered to the other world, due to the many attributes of the Moche owl deity as noted above, and as such is known as a "sacrificial rite vessel". (One of the few examples of this type of vessel was offered by Arte Primitivo, New York, June 2005, no. 329, $12,000.00-$15,000.00 estimates. The vessel offered by Arte Primitivo is also red-brown and cream colored, 10.5 inches high, and is Moche IV phase. See attached photo.) Ex: S. Benger collection, Germany, circa 1970's. Ex: G. Hirsch Nachfolger, Pre-Columbian Art Auction 257, Sept. 2008, no. 179. Ex: Private New York collection. (Additional documentation is available to the purchaser.) I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Pre AD 1000 item #1169806
Apolonia Ancient Art
$6,875.00
This large piece is a "Veracruz" culture standing priest, Remojadas type, that dates from the Classic period, circa 450-650 A.D. This piece is approximately 22.5 inches high, and easily stands by itself on a custom wooden stand. This piece is of an artistic style, known as "Remojadas", which is the name of a particular archaeological site, although objects in closely related styles actually come from a number of different sites in Veracruz. The name "Remojadas" thus refers to objects from south-central Veracruz, generally from the Classic-period. This piece is also known as a "Xipe-Toltec" type priest, as he portrays the god in costume. The "Xipe-Toltec" cult flourished along the Gulf Coast of modern day Mexico during the Classic and early Postclassic periods before gaining a prominent place in the Aztec pantheon, probably as a result of the subsequent Aztec domination of the Gulf Coast in the mid-15th century. Most Xipe figures vividly depict a human inside a flayed skin of another man, and this god was known as "Our Lord the Flayed One". According to Charles Phillips in "Aztec and Maya", Lorenz Pub., London, 2007, p. 62: "Victims killed in honour of Xipe Totec, the god of planting and vegetation, were shot with arrows so that their blood flowed into the earth like life-giving waters. Indeed, the Aztecs called human blood "chalchiuatl" (precious water). The corpse was then flayed and a priest would wear the skin in honour of the god. The rite was a celebration of the splitting of seeds that makes possible the growth of new vegetation each spring." Mary Miller and Karl Taube in "Ancient Mexico and the Maya", Thames and Hudson Pub., London, 1993, p. 188 also add: "At the time of the Conquest the Xipe festival fell during the spring, in our month of March, and much of its imagery suggests agricultural renewal: as a seed germinates, it feeds off the rotting hull around it, finally letting the new shoot emerge. The Xipe impersonators wore the old skins until they were rotten, when the young man once again emerged." The Xipe-Toltec piece offered here displays a priest wearing the flayed skin of a sacrificial victim, as seen with the rolled skin folds seen hanging below the neck, the skin leggings, the skin bundles tied at the back shoulder and the right hip, and the human skin mask. There are black-bitumen painted highlights seen on the headband with medallions, earplugs, lips, and eyes. There are also black-bitumen painted extruded eyeballs that are seen hanging from the eye openings, and the black lips accentuate an open mouth that shows this dramatic figurine chanting in a ritual posture. This expressive figure is also holding a floral designed fan with petals, which may represent the Xipe ritual of regeneration. This piece is made from a light gray terracotta, and has light tan mineral deposits. This piece was repaired from several large fragments, which is usually the case for large-scale Veracruz pieces such as this, and this piece is a better example than what is usually seen. The floral fan is an attribute that is seldom seen as well, and this is a principle reason why this large example is a scarce to rare type. The floral fan also indicates that the individual depicted is likely in the act of performing the "Xipe-Toltec" regeneration ceremony, along with the fact that this priest is seen with an open mouth who appears to be chanting in the act of the regeneration ceremony which ensured the planting and growth of the new years crops. The majority of these figurines are seen simply standing in an upright position, and are not seen holding any implements of any sort, but more importantly, the majority of these Veracruz "Xipe-Toltec" figurines do not display a dramatic facial expression such as this example. (Another Veracruz "Remojadas" example of this type and of the same size is offered in Bonhams African, Oceanic & Pre-Columbian Art, New York, Nov. 2012, no. 3. $8,000.00-$12,000.00 estimates, $10,000.00 realized.) For the type offered here see: "Ancient Art of Veracruz", Ethnic Arts Council of Los Angeles, 1971, no. 31. Ex: Private CA. collection, circa 1970's. Ex: Bonhams Art & Artifacts of the Americas auction, San Francisco, Sept. 2012, no. 1039. I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Pottery : Pre AD 1000 item #1184568
Apolonia Ancient Art
$3,685.00
This superb vessel is a Moche fineline ceramic that dates circa 450-600 A.D., Moche IV-V periods. This vibrant piece is approximately 12.2 inches high by 6.5 inches in diameter, and is in intact condition with bright dark red and cream colors. This piece also has some attractive light brown burnishing, some minute spotty light brown mineral deposits, and there is a small probe hole seen near the base on one side which is commonly seen on many authentic Moche ceramics. This piece also has a flat bottom and two lively running serpent warriors facing left, which are carrying shields/maces in an extended arm, and are seen with a bended extended leg. The fineline painting, along with the wave motifs seen on the raised stirrup, are painted in a vibrant dark red slip. This piece is one of only a few recorded examples that was likely painted by the same hand of a singular master painter, and is very analogous to the example seen in the Sackler collection. (See "Art of the Andes: Pre-Columbian Sculptured and Painted Ceramics from the Arthur M. Sackler Collections", Arthur M. Sackler Foundation Pub., Washington, D.C., p. 181, no. 58. See attached photo.) These serpent warrior examples are also thought to have been found in one geographic location, i.e Chimbote in the Santa Valley, and this theory also supports the premise that this piece was painted by an individual master painter. (This theory is also mentioned by Paul Clifford in the Sackler reference noted above.) The Sackler example and the superb example offered here, both show a coiled serpent body which conveys movement, a lively open mouth, dotted eye, and dark red trefoil body spots. This serpent warrior anthropomorphic composition conveys not only movement, but also a lively expression, which in combination makes this piece a master Moche composition. The anthropomorphic running serpent warriors composition also is a representation seen within the Moche spirit world, and may represnt the resurrection of a Moche warrior. This piece is a rare to scarce type, and is seldom seen on the market. Ex: Private German collection, circa 1970's. Ex: Dr. Klaus Maria collection, circa 1980-2012. (Note: Additional documentation is available to the purchaser, including a TL test document from Gutachten Lab, no. 3821027., dated Nov. 27th, 1982.) I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Stone : Pre AD 1000 item #812519
Apolonia Ancient Art
$6,875.00
This dramatic "power" type piece dates circa 200-500 A.D., and is from the Peten region of the Yucatan Peninsula, which is Guatemala/southern Mexico. This exceptional piece is a Mayan green stone mask that likely was a pectoral that served as the central element in a ceremonial necklace. This piece is approximately 3.5 inches wide by 4.8 inches high, is a complete example with no repair and/or breaks, and is in superb condition save for some minor roughness at the back top. This green stone mask may be fuchsite or a diopside, as there are attractive (mica?) speckled silver inclusions that are readily seen within the stone. There are also light brown mineral deposits seen on sections of the outer surface, and dark brown mineral deposits seen in most of the lower relief sections of this piece. The Maya highly valued this type of green stone, and there are few authentic ancient Mayan green stone objects carved made from this material, and as such, this piece is rare to extremely rare . This piece was valued highly enough in that it was placed as the central component in a ceremonial necklace, and there is a bow drilled hole on each side of this mask that held it in place within the necklace. In addition, the eyes and mouth were formed into the stone by a "pecking" technique, and the back side of this piece has a concave surface. (For an anlogous designed necklace made from a similiar type green stone see "Maya" by Peter Schmidt, Ed., Rizzoli Pub., Venice, Italy, 1998, no. 140. This piece is also seen in the Museo National de Antropologia in Mexico City, Inv. no. 10-000220.) Carved green stone objects, such as the extremely rare piece offered here, were highly valued by the Maya and reinforced the high rank of individuals wearing them. In the Classic period, green stone objects and beads made for the Mayan elite actually achieved the status of "money", such was the importance and acceptance of these objects. One principle reason for this was that these green stones are the same color as sprouting maize, which represented life on earth and eternal life in the spirit world. Sacred Mayan green stone objects were passed down from generation to generation, placed in sacrificial caches, and used as grave offerings. The pectoral mask offered here is also interesting in that the design of the face resembles the Mayan hieroglyph "ahau", meaning "lord", as it is written in its simplest form. There are also many forms of this common Mayan "lord" glyph, and this "lord" glyph evolved over time, but the form of the piece offered here is closest to the simple "lord" glyph seen during the Classical period, which is also the period that this piece was produced. Both the simple "lord" glyph and the piece offered here have rounded eyes and mouth, thick lips that run around the mouth opening, and two vertical lines that run from the upper lip to the forehead that form the design of the nose and the face of the glyph. (For this theory and a chart of line drawings relative to the evolution of the "Ahau" glyph see "The Stylistic History of the Mayan Hieroglyphs", by Dr. Hermann Beyer, Tulane University Pub., New Orleans, 1932.) The fact that this mask resembles the Mayan simple "lord" glyph is not surprising, as it was probably an important Mayan lord that wore this piece in ceremony and perhaps even in death, and as such, this piece can be considered an important "power" type object. This piece is mounted on a custom metal base and can easily be removed. This piece has also been authenticated by examined in great deatil by Mr. Robert Sonin and Mr. David Joralemon in New York. Ex: Martin Falk collection, Long Island, New York (acquired circa 1960's.). Ex: Arte Primitivo, Fine Pre-Columbian Auction, New York, Auction 46, no.125. Ex: Private French collection. (Additional documentation is available to the purchaser.) I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Pottery : Pre AD 1000 item #1239393
Apolonia Ancient Art
$3,265.00
This attractive piece is a Vicus culture seated figurine that dates circa 200 B.C.-300 A.D. This piece is approximately 6.9 inches high, and is in mint to superb condition with no repair/restoration. This piece has a pleasing nice deep reddish-brown glaze, and has some minute root marking and some light blue/black spotty mineral deposits. This piece is a stirrup-type vessel, and it has a flat bottom. The legs and arms are seen tucked in close to the seated body, and this figurine seems to exhibit an inner core that is changing from an animal form to a human form, or vice-versa. This piece is classified as a "transformation type" ceramic, and this can especially be seen with the human facial features relative to the almond shaped eyes and well defined nose. The wide mouth appears to exhibit this change as well, as does the dual lobbed head which is an anthropomorphic animal feature which is attributed to an animal such as a monkey. This piece is also an excellent example of a ceramic from the Vicus culture of ancient Peru, due to the reasons noted above, and most pieces from this culture seem to exhibit some form of "transformation" from one degree to another. This piece is also "thick walled", and has some weight to the piece. The early Peruvian ceramics from this culture were also fired at about 400 degrees C, thus producing a "thick walled" ceramic, as opposed to the subsequent Peruvian cultures such as the Moche, which produced "thin walled" ceramics which were fired at about 1000 degrees C. This piece is also analogous to an example seen in "Arts Ancient du Perou" by Bernard Villaret, Times Editions Pub., 1978, p. 51. (See attached photo.) This piece has some weight, as one handles this piece, and is in scarce mint condition with a vibrant deep reddish-brown glaze. Ex: Dr. Ernst J. Fischer collection, Germany, circa 1980's. Ex: Auktion Ketterer 119, Zurich, 1987. Ex: Private German collection. Note: Additional documentation is available to the purchaser, including a TL test from Gutachten Lab., 11/23/1984, no. 584912. I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Pre AD 1000 item #1281362
Apolonia Ancient Art
$3,265.00
This superb vessel is a Moche stirrup vessel that dates circa 300-400 A.D., Moche III Period. This piece is approximately 7.5 inches high, and is in intact condition with vibrant dark red and cream colors. This striking vessel has some minute black spotty mineral deposits and root marking, and has a nice even glaze. This piece is a lustrous deep dark red stirrup vessel, with a cream colored body, and the decorative elements seen on the main body of this vessel are also rendered in a dark red color. These decorative elements are comprised of two anthropomorphic figures seen moving to the right, with snake-headed tails and trailing snake-headed headdress/ears; and three snakes, with one seen between the stirrup handle, and two others which act as a dividing panel for each of the moving figures. These moving figures are also seen with a serpent-like and/or Iguana-like head, and a single human leg and arm which are extended away from the body, and this Moche convention of art is meant to convey that these figures are in motion. In addition, these figures are seen holding a sacrificial tumi knife in each hand, which may be an indication that this vessel portrays a sacrificial scene, as these moving figures may also be portraying Moche priests in costume who are engaged in a ceremonial sacrificial scene as "spirit gods". These moving figures also appear to be confronting the two facing snakes, and these facing snakes may also be seen as "spiritual sacrificial victims". According to Christopher Donnan in "Moche Fineline Painting: Its Evolution and Its Artists", UCLA Fowler Museum, Los Angeles, Ca., 1999, p. 196-197, Donnan comments further on Moche ceramics of this type: "The paintings of several other artists are stylistically similar to those of the Madrid Painter and the Larco Painter. All are on similar stirrup spout bottles with red spouts and white chambers. Both the red and white slips on these bottles were well prepared. They are covered evenly and completely, with none of the underlying color bleeding through. They painted fineline designs in red slip and added details either by overpainting or the cut-slip technique. Careful burnishing produced a handsome surface luster. These features are very distinctive amoung Phase III painted vessels. Perhaps they were produced in a single workshop." (See attached photo from the above reference, Fig. 6.19, that shows an analogous spiritual figure as seen on the vessel offered here. This piece also shows this figure holding a sacrificial head by the hair. This piece was also classified as being stylistically similar to the Madrid Painter.) The piece offered here is very close stylistically to the Madrid Painter, and may be by this painter and/or an individual who worked in his workshop. Moche vessels of this type are now scarce on the market, as they were only produced during the Phase III Period, and are of an extremely high artistic style. Overall, this piece is a superb intact example with vibrant colors, and is also likely by the Madrid Painter and/or his workshop. Ex: Private German collection, circa 1970's. Ex: Dr. Klaus Maria collection, Germany, circa 1980-2012. (Note: Additional documentation is available to the purchaser, including a TL authenticity test document from Gutachten Lab, Germany, no. 219005, dated 05-15-1990.) I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Stone : Pre AD 1000 item #1261165
Apolonia Ancient Art
$1,675.00
This attractive piece is an Olmec stone celt/ax that dates circa 1200-550 B.C. This piece is approximately 6.4 inches high by 3.5 inches wide. This intact piece has beautiful dark-green, blue, and white colors, some dark brown mineral deposits seen in the low relief sections of the piece, and some minute spotty black mineral deposits that are seen on all of the outer surfaces. This trapezoidal shaped piece has a nice semi-sharp blade, seen at the top of the piece, and the bottom tip of the bottom base is unfinished, as this is the original outer edge of the stone from which this piece was formed. This piece also has an esoteric slight bend that runs through the length of the main body, and perhaps this was done to make this piece resemble an ear of corn that is seen peeling away from the central cob. The Olmec were also known to have this type of piece worn on a belt, and the wearer doubled as the Olmec "Maize God", who was meant to represent the central cob of a maize ear. According to Karl Taube in "Olmec Art at Dumbarton Oaks, Library of Congress Pub., 2004, p. 129: "But, for the Middle Formative Olmec, the key plant was maize, the ear of which, in its very form, resembles a green stone celt. With their broad, curving bits and narrow polls, the outlines of Olmec celts are so similar to Olmec representations of maize that it is frequently difficult to distinguish them. Moreover, much as maize seed is prepared on the stone metate, celts and other jade artifacts were surely ground and polished on flat stone surfaces. Through the process of grinding, both maize food and finished jade are created." This type of piece was valued by the Olmec for its beautiful color, as this piece was very labor extensive to produce, and this intensive grinding and polishing resulted in a highly glossy surface which still can be seen with this piece today. This type of piece was also traded widely by the Olmec, and may also have represented a set value of wealth. This attractive piece also comes with a custom black metal stand, and simply slides down into the stand. Ex: William Freeman estate, New Mexico, circa 1960's-1980's. Ex: Private AZ. collection. I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Pottery : Pre AD 1000 item #1044364
Apolonia Ancient Art
$2,875.00
This visually appealing piece is a large Mayan cylinder vessel that dates circa 400-600 A.D. This piece is approximately 8.5 inches high by 6.9 inches in diameter, is intact with no repair and/or restoration, and sits on four legs that are attached to the bottom base. This piece is a bright orange and black-line polychrome ceramic, which has a "square-cubed" geometric pattern that runs around the entire outer surface. This pattern is likely an imitation of a basket weave pattern, or possibly a textile pattern. Mayan artists also relished imitation of one material with another, particularly in painted media that we read as "trompe l' oeil", in which the eye is tricked, and in the case of the piece offered here, the surface was painted in such a way as to make the observer see woven basketry. In addition, and according to Herbert J. Spinden in "A Study of Mayan Art, Its Subject Matter & Historical Development", Dover Pub., New York, 1975, page 147: "Simple basket weavings appear as painted ornamentation on potsherds from the Uloa Valley (Fig. 204). Complicated braided patterns are common as the rim decoration on pottery from this region, and may have had their origin in the imitation of wicker-work basketry. It is probable that basketry was not of much importance as an art among the Maya, owing to the high development of ceramics." This piece has some heavy spotty black manganese deposits and root marking, which is mainly seen on the bottom and at the bottom edge of the vessel. This piece has some minor minute glaze loss, but overall, it is in extremely fine condition. This piece is also from the Salvador/Honduran region, as the orange and black colors are common for the region, but the type of geometric "square-cubed" pattern that is seen running around the entire vessel is not common, and is a scarce design. This large piece is interesting, has a high degree of eye appeal, and is scarce in this condition with its vibrant color. Ex: C.W. Slagle collection, Scottsdale, AZ., circa 1980's. Ex: Private FL. collection. I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition: