Ancient Forms for the Modern Eye April 2018 - Page 110



XX
Paracas Owl Effigy Vessel
Early Horizon: 700 – 1 B.C.
Ceramic: Blackware
Overall: 4 5/8 x 4 1/2 x 5 5/8 in. (11.7 x 11.4 x 14.3 cm)
Height on stand: 5 5/8 in. (14.3 cm)
This is an early Paracas vessel of a little owl. The resin coating has
darkened a bit, but the face of the owl is appealing and has a slight twist to
its head – a look that these creatures will give you – so it has a little humor
to it. It is a very humble piece and a humble creature; the Paracas potter
captured something of its nature. Seen in profile, there is a nice curve in the
way the owl’s face has been done. These little creatures of the coastal river
valleys and the desert beyond are night predators and were greatly valued
for taking care of mice and other pests. It is very nicely observed piece,
humorous and touching in its way.
Provenance: Acquired by the current collection in 1989.
Merrin Gallery, New York.
Andy and Von Long, Denver. Active from the 1960s to the 1980s.
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