Mezcala M-6 Stone Figure, Pre-Columbian Mexico
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Directory: Archives: Regional Art: Pre AD 1000: Item # 1035821
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A nice example of a stone figure from the region of ancient Mezcala, Mexico, circa 300 B.C. - 100 B.C. This example measures just over 4" tall by about 1 1/2" wide (item alone, unmounted) and about 6" tall mounted on the custom display stand. This example is indicative of M-6 types, according to Carlos Gay's important classification of ancient Mezcala figures. Here is how Gay describes M-6 types in his book, "Mezcala Stone Sculpture - The Human Figure": "This type [M-6] is defined by the construction of its facial planes; they are flat- or almost flat- and the salient angle formed by the intersection of the two planes becomes the semblense of a nose extending from forehead to chin. The mouth is a slit or a groove in the lower half of the salient. The neck is cut deeper and narrower than in the M-4 type, while other details remain unchanged."
This example is of the flatter variety (rather than those carved from used, rounded stone axes), which is more more common amongst the M-6 types, and is made of a greyish-colored stone. This fits Gay's classification as well, as Gay continues: "Many of the M-6 figures are carved from grey or white calcite...Calcite figures are flatter, approximately 1" to 8" in height." This example features the typical minimalist incisions and modeling, with only essential elements comprising the human form. From the side view, the figural form tapers down masterfully toward the top of the head and the bottom of the feet, giving a realistic sense of volume and form overall, with the most volume (correctly/ideally) represented in the torso/chest area.
Condition: Intact with no restoration or repair. Minor ancient chipping, abrasions, ancient loss and weathering overall. There is a small area of residue on the back from an old collection label. Mineral deposits and a rich patina overall.
Provenance: Former Florida, USA private collection.
Reference: See Carlo T. E. Gay's book, "Mezcala Stone Sculpture - The Human Figure," page 10, for scholarly info and a similar example of the type.
A nice example of a Mezcala type M-6 stone figure, that is ready to display.