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Superb Olmec Green Stone Seated Shaman Figurine with Jaguar Face

Superb Olmec Green Stone Seated Shaman Figurine with Jaguar Face


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Directory: Antiques: Regional Art: Americas: Pre Columbian: Pre AD 1000: Item # 1341167
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290 Fillmore St. #D
Denver, CO. 80206
303-321-7351 gallery

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 $8,865.00 
$8,865.00

This superb Olmec seated figurine dates to the Intermediate Olmec Period, circa 900-600 B.C., and is approximately 3.6 inches high, by 1.9 inches wide, by 1.75 inches deep. This piece is intact, with no repair/restoration, and was carved from a light to dark green serpentine stone. This piece also has some spotty light black to dark green dotted inclusions seen within the stone, and a light brown patina seen in the deep recesses of the figurine. There is also some spotty minute root marking, and some faint traces of red cinnabar. This piece likely depicts a shaman seen in the seated position, and it is a complete carved figure that is finished in the round. This attractive piece also sits upright without falling over, as this piece also has a flat to slightly outward curved underside that provides a solid base. The arms and hands are seen resting on the knees of the crossed legs, and the oval shaped head is seen slightly tilted to the left. The entire body appears to be nude, as are most Olmec figurines of this type, and the facial expression also features the typical downward turned thick lips and horizontal deep carved eyes. The mouth design with the thick lips that are downturned, is also known as the "Olmec jaguar mouth", and is the prominent design feature of the piece offered here. The "jaguar mouth" seen on this piece is also thrust forward towards the viewer, and was an intentional design of the artist, and one can easily see this design feature as one looks at this figurine from the side in profile. The slight tilt of the head also accentuates the design of the face, and gives this piece a great deal of expression. The wide nose has two small bow drilled holes for the nostrils, and in addition, there are two bow drilled holes seen at each end of each eye. The overall face design is one that is seen as a "transformation" type face, from human to jaguar, or vice-versa. The seated and/or kneeling pose of this figurine is also known as the "transformation shaman pose", which is associated with Olmec figurines that are thought to depict a shaman in various stages of transformation from human to jaguar, and vice-versa. (See "The Olmec World: Ritual and Rulership", by F. Kent Reilly III, Princeton University, Abrams Pub., 1995, pp. 27-45.) The superb Olmec figurine offered here is an excellent example of Olmec "transformational" type art, and is seldom offered on the market in this condition. This piece also has an extensive authentication examination report from Stoetzer, Inc., Miami, FL., report #010514.1, dated 02/09/2014; and was also authenticated by Robert Sonin, New York, c/o Arte Primitivo, New York. Ex: Edmund Budde Collection, circa 1950's. Ex: Arte Primitivo, New York, circa 1990's. Ex: Private New York collection. (Note: Additional documentation is available to the purchaser, including the examination report noted above.) I certify that this piece is authentic as to date, culture, and condition: