CULTURE: Michoacan ORIGIN: Central Mexico AGE: Ca. 300 B. C. - 300 A. D. DESCRIPTION: A charming hand modeled "flat figure" measuring 4 1/4" in height by 1 3/4" in width...included in the sale is a museum quality custom metal stand which makes the overall height 4 3/4" when mounted. This highly appealing lady is in a standing position and is clasping a pan flute in both hands and is intently playing the instrument. She has a triangular head with a stylized deeply incised hairdo forming inverted triangles on each side of her forehead. She has heavy lidded coffee bean eyes and massive earspools in the form of stylized flowers. A wide necklace is visible below the flute and she is clothed in a short upper thigh length tunic. Extra detailing appears on the rear of the figure in the form of deeply incised lines defining her hair and a waist band tied in the rear. It is apparent that the artist took great care and effort to create this minature work of sublime beauty. She has numerous mineral deposits attesting to her great antiquity. The figure stands alone as a minature treasure on her own or would make a fine addition to even the best selected collection. Many "flat" or "gingerbread" figures can be found in artifact collections from West Mexico but very few have survived from Central Mexico. She has great presence as you will see in the attached photographs. Most experts in the field believe these small hand made effigies were created to influence pregnancy and childbirth.