Museum Collections - Intermediate Area - Artifact #1

Ceramic Female Figure - Intermediate Area

WHO: Cultures of the Nicoya peninsula

WHERE: North Pacific coast, Costa Rica

WHEN: Late Polychrome Period, A.D. 1200-1500

WHAT: The woman depicted here is heavily adorned. She has extensive body decoration around her mouth and breasts, ear spool jewelry, a headdress, something in her hands, as well as painted legs which leave her exposed. It is possible that this was not everyday adornment for women and that this particular costume was worn during a special ritual.

Relatively little research into the cultures of the Nicoya peninsula has been undertaken so it is difficult to determine exactly what the costume on this figure might be signifying.
Height: 29.5 cm

HOW: Coil-built with modelled additions. Burnished red earthenware with black slip decorations.

MUSEUM: Gardiner Museum of Ceramic Art. G83.1.150

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