Quimbaya Pottery Slab Male with tail of Bird, Colombia, Late Classic Period 500 - 1000 CE. Slab male with seated on crouching legs and hands on knees. Slanted eyes and smiling lips with pierced head and body for feather insertions. Incised tattooed arms and legs. Intact with some earthen encrustation but in excellent condition. 12 3/4" high. See Gardner Museum of Ceramic Art, accession number G83.1.0175. The Quimbaya inhabited the areas corresponding the modern departments of Quindío, Caldas and Risaralda in Colombia, around the valley of the Cauca River. There is no clear data about when they were initially established; the current best guess is around the 1st century BCE.
The Quimbaya people reached their zenith during the 4th to 7th century CE period known as The Quimbaya Classic. From this period comes the most emblematic piece of this culture: the Poporo Quimbaya (currently exhibited in the Gold Museum). The most frequent designs in the art pieces are anthropomorphic, depicting men and women sitting, with closed eyes and placid expression.