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 #1237476
Apolonia Ancient Art
$3,675.00
This animated piece is a squatting figurine that is from the Nazca-Wari culture, circa Middle Horizon, 600-700 A.D. This interesting piece is approximately 5 inches high, and has a flat bottom base. This figurine likely represents a squatting male who is seen holding a ball upwards with his right hand, and his left hand is also raised to his left ear lobe which appears to be bleeding. This blood is also seen running down his left arm, and his facial expression is very animated with his crooked mouth. This crooked mouth may also be a representation from his injury to the left side of his head, which also may represent a stroke and/or a cranial injury. The figurine is also seen wearing a cloak with geometric patterns, and it may be that the person depicted here may also have been a ballplayer. The raising of the ball in his right hand may also be a sign of victory in the ancient Mesoamerican ballgame, and this may depict the point of victory in the game. This piece is also a ceremonial whistle vessel, and makes a high pitched noise when one blows into the bottom opening seen at the back side of this piece. There is also an opening for the whistle seen at the back side, and also the remains of a stirrup attachment, as this piece is the front half of a stirrup vessel. This piece may also have been ceremoniously broken when it was buried, and perhaps this was linked to the fact that this piece may have portrayed an actual person. This piece was also collected by Dr. Ernst J. Fischer who collected Pre-Columbian ceramics that displayed medical related diseases and/or conditions. The condition of this piece is also superb to mint quality and the white, gray, light red, and black colors are very vibrant. This piece was also one of the favorite pieces of Dr. Fischer, and is one of the rare examples of Andean Pre-Columbian art that likely displays a medical condition such as an injury and/or stroke of an individual. In addition, the injury depicted here may have been self inflicted and/or initiated to relieve the condition of stroke, but it is more likely that this injury was the result of playing in the ballgame. It is also interesting to note that the face of this individual is divided into two parts, with one half of the face depicted in light red, and the other half, in light gray. This piece is also a rare medical related type of ceramic, and is seldom seen on the market. An analogous piece from this culture was offered at Sotheby's African, Oceanic & Pre-Columbian Art, New York, May 2014, no. 203. (See attached photo. This complete open-topped vessel is approximately 5.5 inches high, and has analogous colors/design relative to the tunic and bilaterally colored face. $10,000.00-$15,000.00 estimates, $68,750.00 realized.) Ex: Auktion Ketterer 163, 1989, no. 337. Ex: Dr. Ernst J. Fischer collection, circa 1980's. Ex: Private German collection. Note: Additional documentation is included for 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 #1340583
Apolonia Ancient Art
$4,675.00
These two rare Mayan pieces are two carved longbones that date to the Late Classic Period, circa 600-900 A.D. These pieces are approximately 4.3 and 4.6 inches high, and are approximately 1 inch in diameter at the widest point of each piece. These two pieces are intricately carved, and each feature the profile of a Mayan lord, who is seen wearing large jade earflares and an elaborate headdress. These pieces are also published in "The Face of Ancient America: The Wally and Brenda Zollman Collection of Precolumbian Art", Indianapolis Museum of Art, 1988, no. 84 (See attached photo.), and the following is the description of these rare pieces by John Carlson: "The headdresses contain images of long-lipped monsters. At the top of the bone pictured to the right is the profile face of some mammalian creature, possibly a peccary, which does have sky associations. The exact function of such carved bones in not known. They may have been handles for fans, bloodletter perforators, or even musical instruments. Some may also have been used as smoking tubes such as are usually depicted protruding from the forehead of God K. Schele and Miller have also discussed two fine examples of Mayan incised longbones; one is from a jaguar, and the other is a deer tibia. Both images and texts portray dynastic rites. Three additional bones published by Von Winning also present royal profile portraits, and two clearly show the drilled holes for suspension. These carved bones may have been worn as pectorals or attached to the costume for use in some specific, but as yet incompletely known dynastic function. In any case, all such carved bones are clearly high-status objects". The pieces offered here do not have any drilled holes for suspension, but could have, as there appears to be some of the leading edge missing on both ends of both pieces. These pieces are nearly complete, and are in superb condition for a perishable material such as bone, and are some of the best known published examples for the type. In addition, the carved bones offered here may be animal or human, and that fact was also unknown to the academics of the reference noted above, as the description reads: "Carved bone (human?)". The two sacred pieces offered here certainly had royal associations, and were likely used in some sacred regal ceremony and/or religious ritual. These two pieces also sit on a custom display stand, and can easily be removed. Ex: Wally and Brenda Zollman collection, circa 1970's. Published: "The Face of Ancient America", circa 1988. Exhibited: Indianapolis Museum of Art, circa 1988. Exhibited: Indiana University Art Museum, circa 1989. I certify that these pieces are 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:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Pottery : Pre AD 1000 item #905917
Apolonia Ancient Art
$765.00
This dramatic piece is from the La Tolita culture that is from northern Ecuador, Esmeraldas region. The La Tolita culture takes its name from a famous site that is located on an island at the mouth of the Santiago River. This superb piece dates circa 400 B.C.-300 A.D., is a light brown terracotta, and is approximately 3.75 inches high by 4 inches wide. This piece is a mask that depicts a simian and/or shaman, and the expression is quite dramatic, as the fine detail of the teeth and nose is easily seen. What makes this mask so interesting is that this mask may represent a simian in a state of transformation, from animal to man, or vice-versa, and it may also represent a shaman with a mask who is seen representing this state of being. This transformation may also have been drug induced, as this culure was known to have used drugs in ceremony. This mask is also votive, and may have served as a spirit mask for a mummy bundle or effigy. There are several holes that run around the edge of this piece that may have been used for attachment. This piece is intact, and has no repair/restoration. There is also some original light white paint that is seen in some of the sections of this piece, along with some spotty dark black/brown mineral deposits. This piece is better than most examples that have been on the market, and is analogous to the example seen in the Museo Arqueologico y Galerias de Arte del Banco Central de Ecuador, Quito. (See "Pre-Columbian Art" by Jose Alcina Franch, Abrams Pub., New York, 1983, p. 432, no. 573.) This piece comes with a custom black plexiglas stand, and can easily be removed, as the mask simply hangs from a pin. Ex: Peter Hacintos collection, New York. Ex: Private Florida 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 #1307715
Apolonia Ancient Art
$6,875.00
This attractive piece is a Mayan stone hacha that dates to the Late Classic Period, circa 550-950 A.D. This piece is approximately 6.7 inches high, and is intact with no repair/restoration. This piece is a serpent head with opened jaws that enclose a human head adorned with disk earspools, and each has sunken oval eyes. The serpent head has a crenelated upper lip, and the entire composition of this piece resembles an individual, more likely a warrior, who is seen wearing a hooded costume in the form of a serpent head. Another interpretation of this piece is that this piece represents a Mayan "Vision Serpent", with a warrior brought forth from the mouth of the serpent. This warrior also refers to a Mayan warrior cult that was linked to the evening star (Venus). This cult was also tied to the accession rites of the king, and a large component of these accession rites included the king's wife who underwent a bloodletting ritual so that she could communicate with this warrior, who may have been a dead ancestor, and/or a symbol of the king's role as warrior in this cult. The Mayan name of this "Serpent Warrior" is unknown, but the purpose of the bloodletting rite was to cause the "Vision Serpent" to materialize, along with the emerging "Serpent Warrior". This piece is in the form of a hacha, and may have been inserted into a ceremonial yoke, as this piece has a tenon designed behind the head of the serpent. The Mayan stone yoke and hacha pieces were all associated with the Mayan ballgame, and the piece offered here may also have been used in playing the game as well, as it is a slightly smaller example than what is normally seen. This appealing piece is made from a tan gray basalt, and has traces of red cinnabar. There are also spotty minute black mineral deposits, along with some minute root marking. This piece is a scarce to rare example, as there are very few Mayan stone works of art with the "Serpent Warrior" depicted, in addition to what is seen relative to recorded ceramic examples. This piece also sits on a custom metal stand. This piece was offered in Sotheby's Pre-Columbian Art, Nov. 1997, no. 369. ($2,500.00-$3,500.00 estimates, $5,060.00 realized.) Ex: Sotheby's Pre-Columbian Art, Nov. 1997, no. 369. Ex: Ron Messick Gallery, Santa Fe, NM, circa 1990'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
$1,265.00
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 : 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 #1181942
Apolonia Ancient Art
$3,275.00
This interesting and lively Moche ceramic dates circa 300-500 A.D., Moche III-IV periods. This mint quality piece is approximately 9.25 inches high, and is in intact condition with vibrant dark red and cream colors. This piece also has some attractive light brown burnishing, and minute root marking seen on the upper end of the spout and near the lower base of the vessel. This piece has a lively running deer, seen on each side of the vessel, and each deer faces a central dividing "double-bar" symbol which is seen at the front of the piece. This "double-bar" symbol may also represent a sacrificial "tumi", but more likely it simply is a "tie symbol", with a rope and/or cloth tied around the neck of the vessel. According to Elizabeth Benson in "Death-Associated Figures on Mochica Pottery", published in "Death and the Afterlife in Pre-Columbian Art", Washington D.C., 1973, p. 108: "The tie seems to be symbolic of offering or scarifice; I believe that tying is an integral part of the funerary ritual, and that the jar with the rope around the neck is the purest funerary symbol. The tied jar is perhaps in some way equivalent to the prisoner figure or the sacrificial limb or head". The dark red lively running deer are seen against a cream background, and are vibrantly portrayed with an upturned tail, a "floral-leaf" designed ear, an antler reaching forward at the top of the head, and a protruding hanging tongue. This piece also has a conical projection from the the top of the vessel, along with a seated frog that is seen centered at the top within a red fineline petal design, and the conical projection has an attached red stirrup handle seen on the side. This conical projection may represent a Moche ceremonial sacrificial club, as it is very analogous in shape to the terminal end of a wooden ceremonial sacrificial club that was found in Tomb I, Platform II, Huaca de la Luna, Peru. (See "Moche Art and Archaeology in Ancient Peru", National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C., Yale University Press, 2001, pp. 96-97, fig. 10. See attached photo.) The ceremonial sacrificial club also is associated with the "tie symbol" and the lively running deer seen on this vessel, as they may represent deer that are portrayed as being part of a Moche ceremonial deer hunt. According to Christopher Donnan in "Deer Hunting and Combat", seen in "The Spirit of Ancient Peru", Thames and Hudson, 1997, p. 54-55: "Deer are known to run with their tongues hanging out the sides of their mouths. No other animal in Moche art is shown in this way. Deer are known to run with their tongues out when they are winded or tired, and the artists may have intended to show them in this state. Moreover, when a deer is killed, the tongue will often drop out the side of the mouth through a gap that exists between the deer's incisor and molor teeth. In Moche deer hunting scenes, hunters consistently wear elaborate clothing, headdresses, and ornaments-attire that is altogether unsuited to the stalking and killing of deer. To understand why they are dressed this way, it is useful to consider the ethnohistoric records describing the great hunts practiced by the Inca. The best account is of a hunt held by the Inca ruler, Manco Inca, near the valley of Jauja in honor of Francisco Pizarro around 1536. On that occasion, 10,000 Indians formed a ring around an area 30 to 60 miles in circumference. They then closed toward the center, driving all the animals in the area before them, and forming several concentric rings as their circle grew smaller. When the circle was small enough, designated hunters entered it and killed as many animals as was desired." It's also quite possible that the deer seen on this vessel are portrayed at the point when they were ceremoniously killed, and that they were killed primarily for their blood for it's use in ceremony. In addition, the "floral-leaf" designed ear may also represent a deer's ear that has been engorged with blood from stressed running. The Moche placed a great deal of importance to the deer hunt, and the piece offered here shows artistic features that point to this fact. This mint quality piece is a scarce example of Moche fineline ceramics, 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. 279006, dated July 6th, 1990.) 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
$3,675.00
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 : Stone : Pre AD 1000 item #1234381
Apolonia Ancient Art
$1,875.00
This scarce piece is an extremely large Mayan green jadeite tube that dates circa 600-900 A.D. This solid piece is approximately 8.5 inches long by 1.4 inches in diameter, and has a beautiful dark to light green color. The beautiful stone seen here is likely jadeite, rather than serpentine, as it is extremely dense. This interesting piece has a bow-drilled hole at each end which connect near the center, and the bow-drilled holes are approximately .5 to .6 inches in diameter which also slightly narrow within the tube. There is also a layer of gray calcite deposits seen on the inner surfaces, and a light mineralized patina on the outer surfaces as well. This piece is also not perfectly round, has a somewhat rectangular shape, and has a great deal of eye appeal. There is a very strong possibility that this scarce piece was used in Mayan smoking ceremonies, and/or may have been used in Mayan regalia and served as a decorative item in a headdress, a necklace, or a sacred ceremonial object. This piece is also somewhat heavy, as it is likely a dense green jadeite which was sacred to the Maya. According to Francis Robicsek, in "The Smoking Gods", University of Oklahoma Press, 1978, p. 73, Robicsek elaborates on the forehead tube that was used to identify God K: "Forehead tube thought to represent a cigar. This is a fairly constant trademark of this deity. The identification of God K of any portrait lacking the forehead tube is suspect. It is nearly always present on ceramic representations and on stone carvings, but is usually absent from paintings in the codices. The object may be tubular or funnel-shaped, or it may resemble a celt. Sometimes it is undecorated, but more often it is striated, dotted, or marked with oval symbols. It also varies greatly in size and, if painted, in color. As a rule the tube emerges from the forehead; however, in two paintings, both of them on Peten ceramics, it protrudes from the mouth. On most portrayals the handle of the tube is sunk into the head and it is not visible; on others it emerges at the nape. As discussed earlier, these tubes probably represent cigars, but the possibility that they may represent torches or celts cannot be excluded." In addition, the piece offered here may also have been used by the Maya relative to the relationship of the royal elite to God K, and may have been used by the Maya as noted above in some capacity as a decorative element and/or used relative to the smoking culture of the ancient Maya. This piece also sits on a custom display stand. Ex: Private CA. collection, circa 1980's. Ex: Walter Knox collection, Phoenix, AZ., Ex: Private CO. 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 #1307402
Apolonia Ancient Art
$3,675.00
This large Mayan poison bottle dates to the Late Classic Period, circa 550-800 A.D., and is approximately 3.75 inches high, by 3.45 inches wide, by 1.5 inches thick. This mold made piece has a mirror image on each side that was pressed into the clay with a stamp. The image seen here is an audience scene between the Mayan God K, seen seated on the left, who is conferring with the seated Mayan God L that is seen to the right. Seen between them is a glyph band that is comprised of seven individual glyphs. Both of the Mayan gods seen here are also clad in intricate regalia and jade jewelry. God K also has an elongated snout and a smoke scroll that is emerging from his forehead, and God L, one of the lords of "Xibalba", who has an old man's wrinkled face, is seen wearing a distinctive "Moan Bird" headdress with upturned feathers. The Mayan "Moan Bird" was named "Oxlahun-Chaan" or "13-Sky", and he is the Mayan personification of the "Katun" and of the "sky". This piece also has mirror image double glyph bands seen on each side of the vessel. This piece is also intact, has no repair/restoration, and is in superb to mint condition. This piece also has some minute spotty black mineral deposits, and some attractive light brown burnishing. There are also traces of red cinnabar seen on the low relief areas on the outer surface, and this piece probably held powdered incense, or colored pigments, or red cinnabar that was sacred to the Maya. Red cinnabar was also widely traded within the Mayan world, and it was this type of vessel that was used to facilitate this trade. Red cinnabar has preservation properties, as it was mercury based, and this is why this type of Mayan bottle is often referred to as a "Poison Bottle". The Mayan elite also lined their tombs with this material, and in addition, traces of this material are often found on Mayan ceramics, as the Mayan tombs and ceramics were given "eternal life" with this type of material. This piece is a superb example, not only for it's condition, but also because the mold made and stamped images are very clear. This piece is also safe to handle, as the red cinnabar is deeply embedded into the clay and there are only trace amounts. An analogous example with the same stamped design and condition was offered in Sotheby's Pre-Columbian Art, New York, May 1996, no. 344. (The Sotheby's example has the normal size that is approximately 3 inches high. $1,500.00-$2,500.00 estimates, $2,070.00 realized.) Ex: New York collection, circa 1990. Ex: Ron Messick Gallery, Santa Fe, NM, circa 1990's. Ex: Spendors of the World Gallery, Haiku, HI. 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 #1331598
Apolonia Ancient Art
$4,675.00
This attractive brownware ceramic is a Mayan carved bowl that dates circa 550-950 A.D. This piece is approximately 9.75 inches in diameter, by 3.7 inches high. This powerful looking piece has a flat bottom with gently curved side walls, and this design made it very easy for catching liquids. This piece has detailed deep carving, within three rectangular panels, and this skilled carving is in the form of a head commonly known as a "Long-Lipped Monster", and was described as such in the Sotheby's reference noted below. This type of Mayan image is rare, although it is a known image relative to Mayan iconography. This rare image is designed in glyph form, and is comprised of a scroll eye, upturned snout, bared fangs, smoke scrolls curling at the back, and sections of crosshatched elements. Each of the three rectangular panels are also separated by two smooth petalled-shaped motifs, and the entire bowl thus has a floral-like appearance. The "Long-Lipped Monster" image depicted here may also represent what is known in Mayan iconography as a "Square-Nosed Serpent" image. According to Andrea Stone and Marc Zender in "Reading Maya Art, A Hieroglyphic Guide to Ancient Maya Painting and Sculpture", Thames and Hudson, London, 2011, p. 227: "This logograph combines ophidian and floral elements in the form of a band that makes several 90-degree turns, suggesting the upturned snout of a sinuous serpent. Eye and nose rest atop the band and beneath are several curly fangs and no lower jaw. This 'square' or 'fret-nosed serpent' is a prominent, albeit esoteric, feature of Maya art. It seems to embody a radiant life force, expelled through the mouth, nose, or center of a flower, and dispersed throughout the universe, much like mana in Polynesia." This logograph is also associated with Mayan ceremonial bloodletting, and it is also quite possible that the Mayan bowl offered here was a part of this ceremony, and this bowl is in essence, a Mayan ceremonial offering bowl. This vessel also has a light yellow/brown polychrome slip seen both over the inner and outer surfaces, and each of the three rectangular panels have traces of white stucco and red cinnabar that are seen down within the low relief areas of the deep carvings. The carvings seen within each of the three rectangular panels are nearly identical, and were each carved individually, such was the skill of the artist. In addition, the inner surface has a black band seen at the rim and a black circle applied to the inner flat base, and resembles a target for ceremonial bloodletting into the vessel. It's also interesting to note that the color red also contrasts with black, and is easily seen. There is also some attractive and extensive root marking and dark black/brown burnishing seen mostly on the inner surfaces, and there are also some spotty minute dark black mineral deposits which are normally seen on authentic vessels of this type. This piece is also 100% original, and was repaired from three large fragments. This limited repair also appears to have been done some time ago. The interior of the bowl is smooth, and also has a thin polychrome glaze on both the inner and outer surfaces. Overall, this piece is a fine example of a carved Mayan vessel, and the detailed and deep carving also gives this piece powerful eye appeal. Ex: Sotheby's Pre-Columbian Art, New York, May 1995, no. 170. ($2,500.00-$3,000.00 estimates.) 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 #1047632
Apolonia Ancient Art
$965.00
This cute piece is a Colima standing warrior that dates circa 150 B.C.-250 A.D. This piece is approximately 5.5 inches high and is intact, with no apparent repair and/or restoration. This piece is a light red/orange terracotta, and has some minute dark black spotty dendrite deposits. This piece is also a whistle, with an opening at the top and at the back of the hollowed head. The whistle is well made, and makes quite a sharp high-pitched tone. This piece was likely ceremonial, and may have been part of a group ceremony. This type of piece is also known as a "protector" type piece, and is thought to protect the deceased in the afterlife. The standing warrior seen here is nude, and is seen holding the full body length shield with both hands. The shield is leaning against the upper body of the warrior, and only the upper half of his face/head is seen peeking above the upper end of the shield. The design of the curved shield protects a great deal of his body, and it is probable that this stance illustrates the type of warfare that was conducted by the ancient Colima. It is unknown if he is part of a shield wall with many warriors, as was the case of the phalanx formation that was deployed by the ancient Greeks, or if he is simply depicted as an individual warrior in combat. The warrior is also seen wearing a turkey tail feather crest/helmet, and this makes him seem larger than life and more imposing. (A turkey whistle with analogous designed tail feathers, as the crest design seen here, is seen in "Sculpture of Ancient West Mexico" by Michael Kan, Los Angeles County Art Museum, 1989, no.169.) An interesting piece that has a high degree of eye appeal. Ex: Yvette Arnold collection, Dallas, Texas, circa 1970's. Ex: Private Fl. 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 #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 : Pottery : Pre AD 1000 item #1215119
Apolonia Ancient Art
$1,865.00
This piece is a Mayan terracotta that dates from the Late Classic period, circa 600-900 A.D., and is approximately 6 inches high by 7.5 inches wide by 4.5 inches deep. This piece has powerful eye appeal, as it shows the Mexican rain god Tlaloc with large round eyes, scrolled upper lip, and exposed tooth row. This piece is a very large applique that was part of a extremely large vessel which may have had several of these applied appliques that ran around the outside of the vessel. There is original white pigment seen over the exposed teeth and round eyes, root marking seen in sections of the piece, and there are light brown and gray earthen deposits seen over the entire piece. The condition of this piece is intact, with little apparent crack fill, and this piece appears to have broken cleanly away from the main body of the vessel. A wall section of this large vessel also forms the backside of the piece offered here. The mix of Mexican and Mayan motifs in the Late Classic period is not uncommon, and another example of a Mayan terracotta with the Mexican rain god Tlaloc can be seen in "Pre-Columbian Art: The Morton D. May and The Saint Louis Art Museum Collections" by Lee Parsons, New York, 1980, no. 318, p. 205. The Mexican rain god Tlaloc has also appeared since the Early Classic period in the Maya zone, and is often related to scenes of "autosacrifice" involving the nobility, in which they self extract and offer their own blood. This "blood letting ceremony", as an offering to the gods, is also a metaphor for rain, although the Maya had their own rain deity, Chaac. The piece offered here may also have been part of a large ceremonial blood letting vessel. In relation to the letting of blood, the Tlaloc deity also appears on war shields, as seen on Mayan terracotta figures. This piece is scarce to rare, and sits on a custom black metal stand. Ex: E. Duncan collection, Stilwell, Kansas, circa 1980's. I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Metalwork : Pre 1492 item #1242679
Apolonia Ancient Art
$4,265.00
This scarce piece is a Chimu/Inka culture silver mask that dates circa 1300-1532 A.D. This piece is approximately 8 inches wide by 6.9 inches high by 1 inch deep. This appealing designed piece is intact, save for some minor stress cracks seen in the lower nose section, and is complete with no restoration/repair. This piece has a nice dark gray patina with some minute spotty black mineral deposits, and thick dark/light brown mineral deposits are seen on the back side of this piece. This piece was also hand beaten from a single silver sheet, and there are punched cheek, nose, and mouth details. There are also two punched horizontal shaped eye holes, and two holes on each side which were used to tie this powerfully primitive designed piece to a textile shrouded mummy bundle. This piece also has very little bend, and also served as a solid cover for the mummy bundle. The primitive design of this piece may also have been designed to represent the departed in the spirit world, and also served to protect the mummy. This piece is also the normal size for a piece of this type, and another scarce piece of this type classified as Chimu culture is seen in "Peru, Durch Die Jahrtausende", Verlag Aurel Bongers KG, Recklinghausen 1984, Austria, Kat.-Nr. 11.67, Linden-Museum, Stuttgart, Museum no. M 31 059. (The Stuttgart example is approximately 8 inches high and has analogous punched out eye holes, and punched nose and facial details. See attached photo.) The piece offered here is a powerfully primitive designed facial image that defines the essence of Pre-Columbian Andean art. This striking piece also comes with a custom shadow box, and can easily be removed, as it is mounted within with removable plastic tabs. Ex: Auktion Ketterer 149, Lot 371, Zurich, circa 1990. Ex: Dr. Ernst J. Fischer 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 #1088689
Apolonia Ancient Art
$8,800.00
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 and even 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. (See attached photo.) 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. This piece is extremely rare, and so much so, it has also been labeled as "Teotino culture" by some pre-Columbian experts. In addition, this piece has been published as "Nazca (?) culture" by the Sakler Foundation, and has had extensive academic research and testing by their pre-Columbian academics, including Elizabeth Benson and Paul Clifford. The description of this published piece offered here, therefore follows the Sakler academic description as: Nasca (?), Peru, South Coast. Ex: Arthur M. Sackler collection, circa 1970's, accession no. N-110. Published: "Art of the Andes", (As noted above), 1983, no. 143. I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition: