Earthenware pottery vessel ”Nicoya”


Pre-Columbian era, Costa Rica, Mesoamerica, private collection from Finland.

Small anthropomorphic terracotta vessel are from the Nicoya culture of Guanacaste, pre-Columbian era Costa Rica, c. 900AD-1400AD.

Pre-Columbian art encompasses the artefacts created by the indigenous peoples from the second millennium BC to the time of arrival of Christopher Columbus in 1492, when the existing culture were conquered by the Europeans.

Beyond the more familiar civilisations such as the Incas and the Maya, smaller ethnic groups were able to develop their own distinctive cultures and artistic style. Many of these civilizations had long faded by the time of the first permanent European colonies and are known only through archaeological investigations and oral history.

A very large proportion of pre-Columbian art is of terracotta. This small globular terracotta pottery vessel has a stylized animal head and long bended limbs. Small decoration bumps on the rim. Decorated with vertical white stripes. Beautiful burnt reddish brown color. Small vessel sits on three nubbin feet. Good condition. Minor cracks. Age-related wear, dirt, soil, encrustation and dust. Size approx. 5,0cm x 6,0cm x 7,0cm. Weight c. 86g.