MEZCALA - MEXICO
350 - 100 BC
Height : 39.2 cm - Width : 19.8 cm - Depth : 17 cm
Speckled porphyritic green diorite
Former collection Guy Joussemet, since 1966
Former collecion Yvon Collet, since 1968
Former collection Maurice Amon, since 2013
This beautiful sculpture is a wonderful testament to the creativity of Mezcala craftsmen from the Guerrero region. These artisans are at the origin of an exceptional lithic tradition by its diversity and modernity. Within the abundant repertoire of stone figures from Guerrero, this work is particularly rare because of its unusual monolithic shape, its important height, expressiveness and the unusual sense of monumentality it conveys.
It contrasts with the allusive and very geometric pure Mezcala style. Here, the artist knew how to respect the original form of the rock to give life to this magnificent character representing an ancestor.
This very hard and magnificent green porphyry diorite stone was carved using only rudimentary tools
Without completely departing from the mysterious abstraction and synthetic rigor that characterize the Mezcala art, our character displays a soft naturalism and generous volumes that gives it a penetrating expressiveness and stylistically brings it closer to the works of the Chontal culture, geographically nearby. Although schematic, its human character is obvious and the energy and wisdom crystallized in the stone are striking.
Carved in a green stone, a precious material par excellence, symbolically related to water and fertility in pre-Columbian beliefs, this figure was probably part of a group of ritual offerings, whose function was to help worship the deceased ancestor, thus helping him to continue his path beyond death to the world of spirits and to then watch over his descendants with benevolence.
Among the different types of Mezcala figures inventoried by the specialist Carlo Gay, this character belongs to the styles M20, M22, M24 and M26, which are characterized by the introduction of naturalistic elements.