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[ Pre-Columbian Art ] Monumental Standing Figure
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[ Pre-Columbian Art ] Monumental Standing Figure, Possibly a Shaman Quimbaya, Urabss Area A.D. 500 - 1000 Gold, Weight 287.4 grams Height 6 ½ in. Width 3 7/16 in. This statuesque figure represents a standing shaman in trance state. It exhibits the prime Quimbaya sculptural quality of monumental grandeur that belies the actual size (though this is still an exceptionally large and heavy pendant figure). He wears a wing-shaped nose ornament of a type for which many fine examples survive. The fine threads which form the broad necklace, the waist band and other bands, and the paired headdress curls were made by wax melted in a section of cane and forced out by a plunger through a small hole into cold water (Robert Sonin, letter of 17 March 2006). The fingers, unusual in their continuation up the arm, were made with wider gauge threads (a figure with identical finger-arm treatment and flattened, outward-thrust feet is in a 1968 Museo del Oro publication, on the cover and on page 6; that example is smaller and far less sculptural and elegant than the present piece). The progress from wholly developed, highly sculptural three-dimensionality in the head, shoulders, and torso toward the much flatter, conceptualized legs and feet is frequently seen in Quimbaya area figural pieces. Holes cast at each side of the neck indicate that this figure was intended at times to be suspended. The effort by the gold workers to use smaller amounts of gold has resulted in thin spots in the lower body area, with minute openings visible on either leg. Other than minor stains on the lower body, the piece is in excellent condition. This lot is sold with a statement of authenticity from the distinguished expert Robert Sonin, and a laboratory report from Conservation and Technical Services Limited, London (Dr. A.T. N. Bennett). Provenance Sra Garrido's Family (from circa 1900) Ofelia Garrido, Dunedi
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