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 #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 #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 : Pottery : Pre AD 1000 item #1250013
Apolonia Ancient Art
$5,865.00
This extremely rare and cute piece is a Moche blackware feline that dates Moche I Period, circa 300-100 B.C. This early Moche piece is approximately 8.25 inches long by 7.2 inches high. This black glossy glazed piece is intact, and has some attractive light brown burnishing and some minute spotty black mineral deposits. This cute piece is a reclined feline that is seen with his long-tailed prey in his mouth, and this prey appears to be a small mammal and/or mouse. This feline's powerful bared teeth are seen holding it's prey securely in place, and this feline also appears to be relaxed, as he is seen reclined with his lower torso to one side along with his wavy tail. This feline is also seen with forward-curving ears, graceful incised whiskers, rectangular nose, and a compact body. There is also a stirrup-spout at the top of the body, and male attributes are seen between the hind legs. This type of Moche ceramic normally does not have prey in his mouth, and as such, is an extremely rare type. Another analogous blackware reclined feline piece, without the prey, is seen in Sotheby's Pre-Columbian Art, New York, Dec. 1981, no. 14. (See attached photo. $1,200.00-$1,800.00 estimates, $1,210.00 realized.) The feline offered here may be a rare black jaguar, or a smaller feline such as a puma. Wild felines held a special place in the mythology of the ancient Americas. The felines special night vision combined with their powers as hunters were often likened to the power of shamans who would incorporate feline elements into their costumes or paraphernalia. The piece seen here also has enlarged eyes, which emphasize this creature's excellent night vision, and the face of this feline has anthropomorphic characteristics. This type of piece is extremely rare, as it is a type that has the caught prey, is in superb condition, and has great eye appeal. Ex: Gayle Grayson Gallery, Chicago, Ill., circa 1980's. Ex: Estate of Daniel J. and Ruth Edelman, Chicago, Ill. 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 #1177714
Apolonia Ancient Art
$3,675.00
This extremely rare piece is a Moche blackware ceramic that dates circa 100 B.C.-200 A.D., Moche 1-II periods. This piece is approximately 6.75 inches high by 5.6 inches wide. This Moche ceramic is an early blackware example, and has a solid black/brown glaze over a light brown terracotta. This piece is in the form of a manta ray, and is seen in an upright position with its wings and tail section acting as support legs. This upright design allows the viewer to see a raised head that has anthropomorphic features, such as an open round eye at each side of the head, an open mouth seen where the gills of the manta ray would have been seen, and nostrils above the mouth. The gills of the manta ray are also seen below the mouth area and between the extended wings that form a base for the piece. In addition, the gills of the manta ray seem to emphasize the anthropomorphic head just seen above, and this anthropomorphic head is likely depicted morphing into a full human head, or vice-versa, from a human into a manta ray. The anthrpomorphic head seen on this piece is also enlarged, and according to Christopher Donnan in "Moche art of Peru", University of California, Los Angeles, CA., 1978, p.30: "Depiction of humans or anthropomorphized creatures involves a standard enlargement of the hands and heads. Sexual organs may also be enlarged for emphasis, although normally they are small relative to the size of the body, or are simply not indicated." The x-rare piece offered here has attractive and extensive root marking, has some minute spotty black mineral deposits, and is intact with no repair/restoration. Another extremely rare Moche manta ray ceramic type of nearly the same size of the piece offered here is seen in the Larco Museum Collection, Lima, Peru. (See attached photo. The Larco example is not a blackware piece, and has extended wings with a human face seen underneath.) The piece offered here is seldom seen in many old collections, and this is an excellent indicator that this piece is an extremely rare type. Ex: Galerie Arte Andino, Munich, Germany, circa 1980-1986. Ex: Dr. Klaus Maria collection, circa 1986-2012. (Note: Additional documentation is available to the purchaser, including a TL test from Gutachten Lab., no. 638646, dated Dec. 5th, 1986.) 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 #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/Honduras region, that has well-defined 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 seen within both panels has 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 #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 : Pottery : Pre AD 1000 item #1047632
Apolonia Ancient Art
$875.00
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 : 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:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Pottery : Pre AD 1000 item #1236064
Apolonia Ancient Art
$1,675.00
This lively piece is a black ware Chimu ceramic that dates circa 900-1470 A.D. This piece is approximately 8.8 inches high, and is intact in superb to mint condition. This piece has an even deep black glaze, and has some white calcite deposits which are heavier in the low relief sections of the conical base. The conical base has three registers, which have impressed triangle and square designs, and the square boxes have "step-pyramid" designs seen within. The head of this duck also has a very lively designed eye, and there are two molded legs seen below as well. The designs seen on the conical base are also artistic hallmarks of the Chimu culture, and these designs and type of conical base are typical Chimu attributes. This piece is an exceptional example of Chimu blackware, and is an excellent animal type Chimu ceramic. Ex: Dr. Ernst J. Fischer collection, Germany, circa 1970's. (Note additional documentation is available to the buyer.) 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 #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 : Pottery : Pre AD 1000 item #1054243
Apolonia Ancient Art
$1,365.00
This interesting Moche vessel is in the form of a skeletal head, and it dates circa 200-500 A.D. This piece is approximately 6 inches high, and is intact with no repair/restoration. This piece is mold made from a light brown terracotta, and there are spotty dark black and brown dotted deposits. This piece has a great deal of eye appeal, as the eyes and mouth are framed with shrunken skin not unlike a death skull. There is some academics that think this type of Moche portraiture displays an ancestor from the underworld, or it may portray a sacrifical victim that is seen with his skin ceremoniously flayed back away from the face. Whatever the case may be, there are many Moche vessels that portray a skeletal figurine, and there is likely a spiritual and/or underworld connection to this genre of Moche art. This piece has a flat bottom and is also designed with an upward tilt, in order that the face looks upward at the viewer. This piece is truly a powerful Moche image, and may also represent a "transformation" piece that may be a bridge between the living and the underworld. Ex: Andrea Sarmiento collection, Miami, FL. Ex: Erika Roman estate, Santa Cruz, 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 #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 : Pottery : Pre AD 1000 item #1239527
Apolonia Ancient Art
$3,275.00
This rare piece is a Salinar/Viru culture monkey "transformation" type vessel that dates circa 400-200 B.C. This piece is approximately 9 inches long by 7 inches high, and is in superb condition with no repair/restoration. This piece is a standing quadruped with a stylized lobed monkey's head, and a short tail is seen curled at the back. This piece is seen standing on sturdy legs, with each flank painted with mythical creatures that have bared fangs and claws. The whole piece is covered with a light yellow-brown slip, and the mythical creatures and facial elements are painted in a light reddish-orange color. This piece is also a "stirrup-handle" type piece that is also designed as a "whistle" type vessel, as it makes a shrill sound when one blows into the raised end of the handle, and as such, this vessel was also likely a "ceremonial" type vessel. In addition, this piece also represents a "transformation" type vessel, as the stylized lobed head on the monkey has human and animal features. This rare early Andean culture ceramic may also be a prototype for the subsequent Moche I ceramics, and as such, this type of piece set the standard for Andean ceramics that have a great deal of realism regarding both human and animal representations. This piece also has some spotty light brown mineral deposits, and is a superb example for the type that is seldom seen on the market. Another analogous example of this culture is seen in Lempertz Pre-Columbian Art, Brussels, Jan. 2010, no. 49. (See attached photo. The Lempertz example also has an analogous painted mythical creature on the flanks as the piece offered here, and both of these pieces may have been produced in the same workshop.) This type of piece is x-rare to rare, and has a high degree of eye appeal. Ex: Dr. Ernst J. Fischer collection, Germany, circa 1980's. Ex: Auktion Ketterer 163, 1986. Ex: Private German collection. Note: Additional documentation is available for the purchaser, including a TL test from Gutachten Lab., 01/14/1991, no. 369012. 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 #1286571
Apolonia Ancient Art
$2,865.00
This scarce to rare piece is a Mayan terracotta model of a throne, which dates circa 600-900 A.D. This piece is approximately 3.4 inches high, by 6.4 inches long, by 3.2 inches wide. This piece is made from four molded pieces, and the details and images seen on this piece were mold pressed into the terracotta. The front side of this piece shows a facing god figure, who also appears to be supporting the weight of the upper panel. The upper panel also shows two square "mat designs" which each show twelve boxes with a "spiral" symbol within. This "spiral" symbol is likely depicted as meaning "CH'ICH", meaning "blood", and/or "blood offering". This symbol also makes perfect sense for this piece, as this piece may also portray an offering altar, as well as portraying a throne that may have supported a seated figurine. The two holes seen at the top may be for pins to help support a seated figurine, but they may also represent holes that were used to drain the blood from the two panels, and this blood would then drip down below the altar and to the underworld gods below. According to the Mayan belief of blood offerings, each drop of blood would nourish the gods and the earth, ensuring a new abundant maize harvest that would feed the people and provide wealth for the court. If this was the case regarding this piece, then this piece likely is a votive representation of an offering altar where bloody offerings were placed for the gods, and this type of altar may also have doubled as a sacred throne for a Mayan royal personage. The emerging facing god seen at the front of this piece, may be a frontal version of the "War Serpent God", otherwise known as the "Jaguar-Serpent-Bird God". This composite image is primarily associated with warfare, and was a popular image with the Maya at Piedras Negras and Chichen Itza. The image seen on this piece also has feathers above each extened arm, jaguar-paw hands, a double necklace, large round ear-flares, and a nose guard attachment. (For the type of god seen here, see "The Gods and Symbols of Ancient Mexico and the Maya" by Mary Miller and Karl Taube, Thames and Hudson1993, pp. 104-105.) This piece is 100% original, and was repaired from four large fragments. There are also minute black spotty mineral deposits seen in various sections of the piece. This type of votive piece is seldom seen on the market, and also displays a Mayan god that is seldom seen. Ex: Private New York collection, circa 1980's. Ex: Howard Rose collection, New York, circa 1990's. I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition:
All Items : Antiques : Regional Art : Americas : Pre Columbian : Pottery : Pre 1492 item #1185287
Apolonia Ancient Art
$1,675.00
This attractive piece is an Inka-Chimu canteen vessel that dates circa 1450-1533 A.D. This piece is approxiamtely 8.5 inches high by 3.5 inches wide, and is in mint to superb condition with no repair/restoration. This piece has an attractive glossy black glaze with some dark brown burnishing. This piece has an indented depression on each side, and seen centered within, is a star and a spiral symbol on each side of the vessel. The star is a well known Inka symbol, and is often seen as a design shape on Inka bronze mace heads and black basalt bowls. The spiral design is also seen as a Nazca line symbol, and these line symbols created in the desert were constructed by the Nazca to have been viewed by the Gods from the air. The Nazca spiral design may have served as a "water/rain symbol", and the canteen vessel offered here may have held water in a votive capacity as well. (An analogous Nazca spiral symbol is seen published in "The Mystery On the Desert" by Maria Reiche, pub. 1949, reprint 1968.) The piece offered here was also likely made by Chimu potters who simply continued working for their Inka masters who conquered their city state of Chanchan circa 1470 A.D. The piece offered here derives from earlier Chimu pottery types/techniques, notably the lustrous blackware made by the north-coast potters of Chanchan and Lambayaque. One feature of these Chimu potters, seen on the vessel offered here, is the single elongated neck of the vessel. This piece is an interesting example of Andean pre-Columbian art, as it has symbols that are common to several cultures, and has a very esoteric shape which is another hallmark of Inka ceramics. Ex: Private German collection, circa 1970's. Ex: Dr. Klaus Maria collection, circa 1980-2012. (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 #1320798
Apolonia Ancient Art
$3,675.00
This superb Mayan "orange glazed" bowl with a glyph band dates circa 600-900 A.D., and is approximately 5.25 inches high by 7.75 inches in diameter. This piece is intact, and has some heavy root marking, along with some white calcite and spotty minute dark black mineral deposits. This attractive piece has a flat bottom, and has a graceful rounded body which gradually narrows towards the rim. This piece has a bright "orange glaze" with a red and black band seen just below the rim. Below this decorative red and black banded design, a black painted glyph band is seen running around the vessel that consists of fourteen identical glyphs. The glyph band was also painted from right to left, and the beginning and end of the glyph band is seen, as the last glyph painted does not have the added "speech scrolls". The "speech scrolls" were not added to the last painted glyph, because the artist ran out of room within the overall composition, and could not over paint into the first painted glyph. This repeating glyph is also analogous to the glyph seen in "How to Read Maya Hieroglyphs" by John Montgomery, Hippocrene Books Inc., New York, 2002, p. 146, Fig. 8-11. (See attached photo.) The glyph seen on the vessel offered here, along with the published glyph noted above, both have "speech scrolls" attached at the left side of the rounded main body of the glyph, and these "speech scrolls" represent a "quotative particle" in Mayan iconography, meaning as the term "quotative" indicates, certain particles (glyphs) attribute phrases to individuals as though these were the figure's utterances or actual speech. In the case of the glyph seen here, it is interpreted as "it is his saying", which may also be interpreted as "this vessel belongs to him". It is interesting to note that this glyph repeats again, and again, around the vessel within the glyph band, and in this case, the presence of this glyph tells us that this object belongs to someone. This type of possessive reference is a well-known reference seen in dedicatory Mayan ceramic texts. The piece offered here is as attractive, as it is interesting, and this type of Mayan ceramic is scarce on the market today. Ex: Arte Primitivo, New York, circa 1990's. 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 #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: