Ancient Forms for the Modern Eye April 2018 - Page 116



XXIII
Chimu Pelican Effigy Vessel
Late Intermediate Period – Late Horizon: 1100 – 1530 A.D.
Ceramic painted in reddish brown and cream
Overall: 13 x 7 1/2 x 12 1/2 in. (33 x 19.1 x 31.8 cm)
Height on stand: 17 1/2 in. (44.5 cm)
This vessel is realistically rendered as a pelican, with its long beak resting
against the chest, large wings held flat to the sides of its ovoid body and short
raised tail. The whole composition has a harmonious oval form. Beginning
with the Moche, many birds were modeled into effigy vessels. This pelican is
a fine example of Chimú observation and craftsmanship.
Provenance: Sotheby’s New York, May 19, 1992 (lot 39).
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