Ancient Artifax Gallery

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Welcome to the Pre-Columbian Gallery. Here I will offer quality, yet affordable, authentic artifacts from throughout the Americas. This gallery will be regularly updated so check back often. Please ask if you would like additional photos or more in-depth descriptions.
Enjoy your treasure hunt...

NEW Page - Spanish Colonial

Over the years I have acquired a fine selection of Spanish (Latin American) Colonial period artifacts. Most date to the very early Colonial period of Central and South America. Click the link (in red) to view the newly added Spanish Colonial Artifax page.

Costa Rican Vessels Two Chiriqui Vessels — Costa Rica, Panama

1000 AD - 1550 AD

Two Chiriqui Phase VI vessels from Costa Rica's Diquis Zone into northerern Panama. Sometimes referred to as Tarrago bisquit or San Miguel bisquit, these ceramics are among the most visually appealing pottery vessels of the region. Without painted decoration, form was of the upmost importance and are true expressions of the art of pottery making. Pottery of this type tends to be very elegant with clean sensuous lines. Most bisquit pottery has been found in habitational sites, while polychromes are typically found as grave offerings. This reinforces the view that polychromes represent funerary ware while bisquit pottery was made more for domestic use. It is thought that all bisquit wares were produced at one location and were widely distributed over complex local and regional trade networks.

Vessel 1 - Buff terracotta tripod with two loop handles. The round bottomed vessel is supported by three hollow legs, each containing a single rattle ball. The legs are in the form of stylized fish, likely representing sharks. An attractive example in good condition. One loop handled has been restored as well as minor repairs to the legs, which is common. Approx. 5" tall x 4.5" wide.

Vessel 2 - Lovely tripod bowl with creamy-golden surface. There are three hollow mammiform legs. Each leg is pierced in several places and contains numerous rattle balls. Condition is very good. The tip of one leg has been restored along with a repaired hairline crack. A beautiful example of the type. Approx. 3.75" tall x 5.5" wide.

$200 each or $350 for both

Copper Tajaderas Trio of Copper Tajaderas — Mexico

1000 AD - 1400 AD

Set of three thin copper alloy Tajaderas from the post Classic period. Likely from the Tarascan culture of the Guerrero - Michoacan area of Mexico. Sometimes referred to as "Aztec Money", these are thought to have been used as currency during that period. Nice intact examples with considerable green oxidation. Great patina and in fine, near excellent condition.

Each approx. 6" tall x 2.25" wide.

$195 for the set

Nayarit Female Figure Nayarit Female Figure — West Mexico

300 BC - 200 AD

Seated Nayarit female figure of the "Ixtlan del Rio" type. She sits with legs crossed and wears a typical style hat, multiple earrings, necklaces, arm bands and a large nose ornament. In her lap she holds a vessel. Appears to be an artisan at work, constructing a pottery bowl, or perhaps she is preparing food. Once polychrome painted, much of the original painted surface is now obscured by heavy manganese, earthen and mineral deposits. Condition is generally very good, near choice. Intact save restoration to one arm. A fine example of the type.

Just under 8" tall x 5" across


Chimu Marine Vessel Chimu Marine Vessel — Peru

1100 AD - 1400 AD

Footed blackware Chimu stirrup vessel with a marine motif. Round bodied and relief carved with rows of interlocking sting rays along with several cute animal adornos. At the base of the stirrup handle are two finely sculpted birds. At the base of the spout sits a nicely detailed monkey. Condition is generally good. Restoration to the handle, spout and adornos. Appears choice and displays well. Ex museum piece with inventory number under the base.

Note: See Inge Schjellerup's "Chimu Pottery" page 24, plate 51 for a similar, although uncarved and less refined example.

Approx. 10" tall x 6" across


Inca Necklace Inca Necklace — Peru

1100 AD - 1500 AD

Lovely strand of Inca beads. Comprised of carved stone, shell and coral beads with a terracotta spindle whorl pendant. Nice variety of shapes and colors. Modern barrel clasp. Ready to wear.

Approx. 16" total length


Moche Protrait Bottle Moche Portrait Bottle — Peru

200 AD - 450 AD

Large bottle-form Moche portrait vessel dating to the Phase III period. Polychrome painted in tones of red, cream and black. The face is expressive, detailed and realistically executed. He wears ear spools and a tight-fitting cap with chin strap. Around his shoulders is a tunic decorated with painted geometric designs. Small feet are indicated at the base of the bottle. A wide flared spout behind the head. Overall condition is near excellent. Small scrapes and dings as would be expected. A few areas of surface erosion, mostly at the bottom, but intact with no breaks or cracks. Some minor paint touch ups. A great example and seldom seen in this size.

See Donnan's "Moche Portraits" for similar examples and information on this type.

Approx. 10.5" tall x 7" across


Lambayeque Lobster Vessel Lambayeque Lobster Vessel — Peru

700 AD - 1150 AD

Attractive Lambayeque double-spout vessel in buff terracotta. Round body with a nicely detailed lobster on top. Flared footed base, tapered spouts connected by a arched handle. The handle is divided into four panels each decorated with finely carved geomectric patterns. Two styilzed faces adorn each side just below the spouts. Reddish brown rings are painted around the base, body and spouts. Overall in fair to good condition. Assembled from several original pieces with restored breaks and paint touch ups, but appears choice. An elegant form. Pretty!

Approx 7" across x 7" tall


Nayarit Figure Nayarit Seated Figure — West Mexico

200 BC - 300 AD

Nice seated figure from Nayarit, West Mexico. Typical redware surface with heavy deposits. The figure wears a hat with flaps covering the ears. The coffee-bean style eyes are wide set. Multiple nose rings and arm bands. A curved object goes from the mouth to a bowl resting in his lap. Overall condition is near excellent. Completely intact save one small area of restoration to the hat, otherwise choice. An interesting piece and an unusual form.

There are several interpretations of what this figure represents. One is that the figure is drinking through a straw an alcohlic beverage called pulque made from the agave plant. The pulque drinker interpretation is an old one and was accepted for some time. However, there does not appear to be any evidence that straws or tubes were used to consume this beverage. Another theory is that of a bloodletting ritual. There is a similar, but larger example of this type at the Mint Museum in Charlotte, NC. Of that piece, Dr. Francis Robicsek says it represents a bloodletting ritual. The figure is pulling a cord through his tongue or cheek. The bloody cord is then collected into a bowl as part of the ritual. Another explanation is that of a musician playing a resonating instrument constructed from a gourd and a flute. Many ancient flutes were played by blowing across the mouthpiece, not into it, which would explain the frequently seen tube positioning at the chin. Yet another interpretation is that of Ethnologist Peter Furst who suggests that the figure is a shaman "charging" a medicinal potion by blowing into the bowl and its contents.

Note: See pages 268 & 269 of "Von Kuste zu Kuste" by Ted J.J. Leyenaar for similar examples and additional info.

Approx. 5" tall x 3.5" across


Cajamarca Footed Bowl Cajamarca Footed Bowl — Peru

500 AD - 1000 AD

Lovely low-footed bowl from Cajamarca in northern Peru. Nicely burnished red on cream painted surface with a repeating geometric pattern. It also contains a rare and interesting design element in the bottom of the bowl. What appears to be a small dot followed by a chili pepper. Possibly painted on as an after-thought or by mistake. Or could it be a type of artist's mark, a signature of sorts? It's always fun to speculate! Condition is genarally good. Assembled from approx. 10-12 original pieces with restored break lines and minor paint touch ups.

Durning Pre-Columbian times, Cajamarca was the most important city in the Northern Andes of Peru. This unique civilization developed unabated from its earliest Chavin phase and remained independent until it was conquered by the Inca. It was at Cajamarca, in 1532, that the Spanish conquistodor Pizarro captured the Inca king Atahualpa, marking the end of the Inca Empire.

Approx. 7.5" wide X 3.5" tall


Peruvian Tupu's Collection of Tupu's — Peru

200 AD - 1400 AD

A trio of Tupu's (shawl pins) from Peru. Cultural origins differ but all are Inca or earlier and are in good to excellent condition. One is gold or "tumbaga", a mixture gold, copper and other metals. It has a broad head and a hole through the middle. Gold (tumbaga) tupu's are very rare. Heavy oxidation could possibly be cleaned to reveal more of the gold surface. The next is silver, topped by a simple disk. Quite eroded especially near the tip, but intact. Last is a copper example, heavily cast with what appears to be a fish tail on the top. A fine and varied selection of ancient metal work. A little more research could more precisely pinpoint their individual dates and origins.

Ranging from 4.5" to 6.5" long

$350 for all three

Nazca Coca Bag Nazca Coca Bag — Peru

100 AD - 500 AD

Beautiful striped Nazca coca bag. These bags, known as "chuspa," were used to collect the leaves of the coca plant. Coca has long been cultivated by South American peoples. The leaves are rich in Calcium and Vitamin-B, they have a mild narcotic effect when chewed in their natural state and are used to help relieve high altitude fatigue, hunger, and thirst. This example is exceptionally fine and brightly colored. Woven in vivid shades of red, green, gold and black. Overall in near excellent condition with only minor staining and light fraying near the bottom. The original strap handle is now missing as is common, but the bag is generally intact and among the best of its type I've seen.

Approx. 10" tall x 9" across


Moche Ai Apaec Bottle Moche "Ai Apaec" Vessel — Peru

300 AD - 700 AD

Moche bottle-form vessel showing finely carved Ai Apaec battle scenes. Thin-walled, round-bodied vessel with footed base and flared spout. The relief carved scene shows the struggle of Ai Apaec as the Sun Deity, a serpent is around his waist. On one hand an Underworld creature, repesented here in reptilian form, seeks to keep Ai Apaec in the darkness. While the other character (in this case a warrior or shaman wearing a solar headdress) tries to pull him up into the light. Two zoomorphic pierced handles on either side are shown as crouching underworld creatures. The important symbolism and culturally significant iconography depicted here provides rarely seen insight into ancient Moche mythology. Condition is generally very good. Restoration to the spout and base; one handle has been replaced. A similar scene on the opposite side is slightly eroded, but overall an exceptional example.

Ex. Hoffman Galleries, Norfolk, Va. Many years ago, Hoffman Galleries was a respected dealer of fine antiques and antiquities.

Please refer to the "Restoration Services", "Breaks" page of this site to see before & after photos of the repairs.

Approx. 5.25" tall x 4.5" across


Teotihuacan Bowl Teotihuacan Bowl — Mexico

200 AD - 700 AD

Large tripod vessel from Teotihuacan; central Mexico's ancient "City of the Gods". A wide and deep bowl shaped vessel with pointy tripod legs. Beautiful, bright orange surface with no additional decoration, similar to other orange-ware vessels commonly found at Teotihuacan. This example is larger than most, has thin walled construction and in great condition. A single restored stress crack along with two small rim chips, otherwise nearly perfect. Some surface erosion, mainly on the bottom and shows nice deposits. A wonderful example, simple and elegant in form. Rarely seen in this size.

Approx. 3" tall x 8.5" across


Mixtec Vessel Mixtec Pedestal Bowl — Mexico

1200 AD - 1400 AD

Mixtec-Aztec offering vessel from Cuautitlan, Mexico dating to the post-classic period. Pedestal base, narrowing at the middle with a flared upper bowl. Thin walled construction with nicely burnished surface executed in a deep orange-red ground color. Finely decorated with black and white painted geometric designs. In generally good to very good condition. One section of the rim and several cracks have been restored, minor paint touch-ups. Light mineral deposits. Very rare type and an elegant form. Pretty piece.

Ex. Sotheby's, Ex. Geoff Smith.

Approx. 4.5" tall x 4.5" across


Chimu Fruit Vendor Vessel Chimu Fruit Vendor — Peru

1100 AD - 1400 AD

An unusual terracotta blackware Chimu vessel depicting a fruit vendor. Angular vessel with a wide strap handle on the back. On top is a seated figure holding an incised rectangular box containing three small spheres, representing fruit. Overall in excellent condition with no damage or repairs. Very minor surface wear and light deposits, but generally choice and an uncommon motif. A fine example with nice detail and a very rare type. Museum deaccession.

Approx. 8.5" tall x 6" across


Perforator Ceremonial Blood Offering Artifacts — Jalisco

200 AD - 400 AD

An extremely rare grouping of items used in ancient blood-letting rituals. Including an obsidian (volcanic glass) spike and two tiny blood offering vessels. All are from Jalisco, West Mexico and are in near excellent condition.

The obsidian blade would have been used as a perforator to pierce the skin, typically the foreskin, during important ceremonies. An amazing example of ancient stone work and exceedingly rare. Found in the Lake Corona area of Jalisco. Just over 7" long.
Ex. Hank Johnson.

The two small terracotta olla's have three perforated lugs and flared rims. Originally found in the dried lakebed of ancient Lake Chapala near modern-day Guadalajara, Mexico and are unique to this location. Ethnographic research indicates that these small pots were used by ancient peoples of the region in personal blood-letting rituals. Individuals cut themselves, made their offering into the pots and threw them into lake Chapala as ceremonial offerings to the Rain God, Tlaloc. The lugs were most likely tied with string and the vessels slung into the lake to encourage rainfall. Intact with minor chips and expected surface wear. The larger is just over 1" tall.
Ex. Washington State private collection and ex. Gerald Alderman

$750 for the group, not for sale individually

Tiwanaku Kero Tiahuanacan Kero — Bolivia

600 AD - 1000 AD

A lovely polychrome kero (drinking vessel) from the Tiwanaku horizon of Bolivia, South America. Boldly painted in a complex geometric pattern. Executed in shades of orange, red and black. Colors are bright and strong. Originally encrusted with calcium deposits and dirt. It has been carefully cleaned to bring back its original beauty and vibrancy. A fine example in very good to near excellent condition. One small crack and two small chips at the base have been restored. Minor paint touch-ups. Tiny areas of paint loss, deposits and some fire clouding remain, else nearly perfect. A beautiful item. Ex. Barney Mallonee. Originally collected and brought to the U.S. in the early 20th century and was passed down to the grandson, Rudy Mallonee. This item has been in storage for nearly two decades.

Please refer to the "Restoration Services" area, "Cracks and Chips" page of this site to see before & after photos of the repair.

Approx. 5.25" tall x 4" across


Chavin Stirrup Vessel Chavin Vessel — Peru

1200 BC - 200 BC

Very large Chavin stirrup vessel from Peru. Elongated form with thick handle and spout. Dark chocolate brown burnished surface. Strong mineral deposits. In near excellent condition. Some light surface erosion and a few small chips at the spout, otherwise perfect. No cracks, breaks or repairs. An elegant example and not typically seen in this size. Quite rare. Spout chips can be easily restored at minimal additional cost, but displays beautifully as is.

Approx. 5" across x 11" tall.


Costa Rican Bowl Costa Rican Ring-based Vessel — Costa Rica

800 AD - 1200 AD

A very rare Costa Rican, Nicoya Zone ring-based pedestal bowl dating to the late Phase V period into early Phase VI. Beautifully painted with intricate geometric designs executed in black on an orange ground. The bowl sits atop three support legs integrated onto a corseted ring base. An unusual example in near choice condition. A small area of restoration to the bottom of the bowl with minor paint touch-ups. A few tiny dings here and there with moderate deposits, otherwise intact. Nicely burnished surface.

Note: See pages 96 & 97 of Paul Clifford's "Art of Costa Rica" from the Arthur M. Sackler Collection for similar examples and additional information. Also see page 223 from the Mortan D. May and Saint Louis Museum Collections for another example of this type.

Approx. 3.5" tall x 6.5" across


Costa Rica Tripod Anthropomorphic Tripod Vessel — Costa Rica

400 AD - 700 AD

An unusual Costa Rican tripod with anthropomorphic legs. La Selva type - El Bosque Phase "A" from the Atlantic Watershed - Central Highlands Zone. Round bowl decorated with incised circles just under the flared rim. The bowl is supported by three unique and interesting figural legs. Each leg is sculpted as a human figure with the arms held at their sides, the heads in the form of a bird. The torsos have open-work "ribs". A feature I've never seen before. An additional slot down the back of each figure. A single rattle ball is contained within each leg. Overall in very good condition. Moderate to heavy surface erosion with most of the original red surface worn away. Minor surface cracks on the bottom of the bowl. One of the birds has been restored, else intact and unbroken. A very rare type.

Please refer to the "Restoration Services" area of this site to see before & after photos of the repair.

Approx. 5.25" tall x 5.75" across


Zapotec Vessel Zapotec Tripod Vessel — Queretaro, Mexico

600 AC - 900 AD

Extra large Zapotec cooking pot from Central Mexico. Vessels of this type were set over open fires and used to cook food. Sometimes referred to as "spider-leg" vessels it has wide-set pointy legs, globular body and large flared mouth. Three lug-type handles around the upper shoulder. The legs are solid with pierced holes at the top. A fine example of a Pre-Columbian utilitarian item and exceptionally large. In very good condition. The surface is blackened from heavy use and has light deposits from burial. The lower legs are slightly eroded, as would be expected. Two restored rim shards, one large and one small. One of the lug handles is also restored, but otherwise intact and in remarkable condition for a vessel of this size. The bottom is marked "Jalapan, Queretaro". Almost certainly the site location. Rarely seen in this size. Displays impressively!

Approx. 8" across x 11" tall.


Rattle Figure Masked Rattle Figure — Costa Rica

400 AD - 800 AD

An adorable little rattle from Costa Rica. In the form of a chubby standing figure wearing a large bird mask with the bird's beak and eyes surrounded by plumage. The face (eyes & mouth) of the figure is barely visible beneath the mask. Numerous rattle balls are inside the hollow figure. Overall in near excellent condition. Minor repairs to the tips of some of the feathers of the mask, else choice. Nice deposits. An unusual example and a rare "masked" motif. Very cute!

Note: See page 217 of Paul Clifford's "Art of Costa Rica" from the Arthur M. Sackler Collection for other examples of rattles and additional information on the type.

Approx. 3.5" tall x 2" across


Nayarit Stacked Bowls Nayarit "Stacked Bowls" Vessel — West Mexico

200 BC - 150 AD

An unusual two-tier vessel from Nayarit, West Mexico. This type of vessel represents two stacked bowls and are occasionally seen in three (even four) tier varieties. Nicely painted with red on a tan colored background, each tier is executed in a different design. In great condition with no cracks, breaks or repairs. A few small surface scrapes. Heavy deposits. A rare type.

Approx. 4.5" across x 4" tall.


Miniature Veraguas Vessel Miniature Frog Vessel — Panama

700 AD - 1100 AD

Tiny little buff terracotta bowl from Panama. Most likely Veraguas. Squat, round vessel with incised and applied decorations. Two realistically sculpted frogs on either side of the shoulder along with other design details. An unusual ring-footed base makes this a truly unique example. Exquisite detail for a vessel of its size. In very good condition. Minor rim chips restored and a small section of the ring base replaced, otherwise a choice little piece. Quite rare.

Approx. 2.5" across x 2" tall.


Small Colima Vessel Small Nayarit Vessel — West Mexico

200 BC - 100 AD

Small Nayarit painted vessel from Western Mexico. Nicely painted in light orange-cream with deep red stripes in a geometric pattern. Rounded bottom and gently curved upper shoulder with a short flared spout. This vessel is extremely thin-walled, the likes of which is seldom seen in West Mexican pottery. Experienced collectors will appreciate the superior quality of the eggshell thin construction. In near excellent condition. One small probe-hole is restored, otherwise choice. Light mineral deposits. A great example and it being ultra thin makes it very rare indeed.

Approx. 4" across x 3" tall.


La Selva Tripod Costa Rican "La Selva" Tripod — Costa Rica

400 AD - 700 AD

Beautiful Period IV La Selva tripod vessel from the Atlantic Watershed region of Costa Rica. Three gently curving hollow legs, each containing rattles. Atop each leg are zoomorphic figures. The bowl is elongated with a corseted neck decorated and a row of incised circles. Very elegant in form and proportion. In generally good to very good condition. A few repairs as is common. Two of the legs have been reattached with restored breaks. Other minor repairs. Some surface erosion, mainly on the lower legs, but overall a nice and attractive example.

Note: See Paul Clifford's "Art of Costa Rica" from the Arthur M. Sackler Collection pages 224-227 for similar examples of the type and additional information.

Approx. 7.5" tall x 5.5" across


Chimu Vessel Large Chimu Double-Chamber Vessel — Peru

1100 AD - 1400 AD

An exceptionally fine Chimu double-chamber vessel from Peru dating to the Early Intermediate period into the Middle Horizon. Both chambers are divided into four sections, each containing relief carved decoration; dots representing rain, waves representing water and peaks representing mountains. One of the chambers has a spout, the other a bird's head in the form of a Hawk belonging to the "Buteo" species. A working whistle is incorporated into the head of the bird. A bridge handle between the two chambers. In excellent condition with no damage or repairs. Only minor surface abrasion as would be expected. One of the best examples of Chimu pottery I've ever seen. Superior workmanship and beautifully executed detail. Larger than most and a rare type.

Note: See Inge Schjellerup's "Chimu Pottery" page 41, plate 75 for a similar, although smaller and less refined example.

Approx. 8" tall x 9" across


Teotihuacan Figure Teotihuacan Figure — Valley of Mexico

450 AD - 650 AD

Molded terracotta Teotihuncan solid slab "flat" figure from the late Tlamimilolpa-Xolaplan period. Nicely detailed and ornate example showing a female figure wearing oversized earspools and with a child help to her chest. In fair condition with areas missing from the lower half. Broken and reglued at the neck. Some fire-clouding present, mostly on the back. Still a nice piece, despite the losses. Larger than most of this type. A rare example.

See Berrin & Pastory's "Teotihuacan - Art from the City of the Gods" for addition info on the type.

Approx. 6.25" tall x 3.5" across


Costa Rican Tripod Costa Rican Tripod Vessel — Costa Rica

400 AD - 700 AD

Costa Rican tripod rattle vessel dating to the late Phase IV period into early Phase V. These are sometimes referred to as "spider-leg vessels" or "chocolate pots". Round-bodied vessel supported by three hollow legs. Each leg contains three rattle-balls. Atop each leg are well sculpted and finely detailed monkey figures whimsically leaning to one side. A nice example in good condition. Several repaired breaks as is common. Two of the three legs have repairs with the rattles of one leg replaced. A few rim chips have also been restored. Some minor chips remain. Appears near choice and displays beautifully.

Note: See Paul Clifford's "Art of Costa Rica" from the Arthur M. Sackler Collection for similar examples and additional information.

Approx. 6" tall x 5.5" across


Chimu Vessel Large Chimu Blackware Vessel — Peru

1100 AD - 1400 AD

Chimu bottle-form vessel from northern Peru dating to the Early Intermediate period. Round vessel with a short flared spout. Two prone figures lay facing the spout and four curled dogs executed in low relief decorate the upper portion of the vessel. Nicely burninshed blackware sufrace with light deposits. Overall in fair condition. Assembled from numerous original pieces with restored breaks. Larger than most and a rare type. Displays well.

Please refer to the "Restoration Services" area of this site to see before & after photos of the repairs on this piece.

Approx. 7.25" tall x 7" across


Small Inca Aryballos Small Inca Aryballos — Peru

1300 AD - 1500 AD

Small Inca polychrome aryballos from Peru. Typical form and traditional painted details with two pierced holes under the rim, loop handles on each side of the body, corseted neck and flared spout. Nicely painted front panel executed in red and dark brown on a cream base. The back is undecorated solid red. Overall in very good condition. The bottom had been broken out, reglued and the break restored. Several rim chips as well as other small chips and dings have been repaired. Minor paint touch-ups. Moderate staining and exterior deposits. Smaller than most, but still an attractive example of the type. Ex. Pacific Northwest collection.

Approx. 6" tall x 4" across


Moche Effigy Vessel Moche Effigy Vessel — Peru

400 AD - 700 AD

Moche effigy vessel in the form of a standing figure. Round body with hands held across the chest. The face is well sculpted with crisp features. Painted in shades of orange and red. Yellow ocher painted details around the hat, tunic and arms. In good condition. Assembled from 8 to 10 original pieces, minor losses restored and light paint touch-ups. Some fire-clouding present, but overall a nice example that displays well.

Approx. 6" tall x 4" across


Moche Protrait Vessel Moche Portrait Vessel — Peru

450 AD - 650 AD

Moche bottle-form portrait vessel dating to late Phase IV into the Phase V period. Wearing a traditional headdress and tempeta tubular nose ornament. Finely sculpted facial feautres showing a stern expression. Painted in shades of red and tan, triangular shapes decorate the hat with two rows of dots at the spout. In good condition. Repaired from originl pieces with minor losses restored. Rare type. For an almost identical example see page 130 of "Moche Art & Archaeology in Ancient Peru" from the National Gallery, Washington. Also see page 19 of Donnan's "Moche Portraits" for a similar example of the type.

Please refer to the "Restoration Services" area of this site to see before & after photos of the repairs on this piece.

Approx. 7.5" tall x 5" across


Lambayeque Vessel Lambayeque Vessel — Peru

700 AD - 1250 AD

An unusual orangeware Lambayeque vessel from Peru. Footed base, rounded body, topped by a tall flared spout. A thick handle on the back connected from the body to the spout. At the shoulder are two well-formed prone figures representing the children of "Naymlap", their faces turned upward. Highly burnished surface with moderate fire-clouding and nice deposits. Generally in good condition. Reassembled from approx. 10-12 pieces with two areas of restored loss. A small chip on the base also restored. Pretty piece with an elegant, graceful form. Ex. California private collection.

Approx. 6.5" tall x 4" across


Moche Deer Vessel Moche "Deer" Vessel — Peru

200 AD - 450 AD

A very nice Moche Phase III bichrome stirrup vessel. Two relief carved (not molded) animal figures on either side. The well-carved scenes show deer (six-point bucks) being hunted, spears are embedded in their backs. Relief carved hunting scenes are somewhat rare as most hunting motifs are found only on painted vessels. This example is executed in tan (buff) clay along with a lightly burnished orange surface. Overall in near excellent condition. A few tiny chips on the spout and base. Minor pitting, but almost choice with no repairs. Shows light to moderate deposits, mostly on the bottom.
Ex. collection of Joseph Espinoza - Toronto, Canada.

Just over 9" tall x 5" across


Vicus Erotic Vessel Vicus Erotic Vessel — Peru

200 BC - 200 AD

Rare Vicus penis vessel. Squat rounded vessel with a curved bottom. On the top is a spout in the shape of a realistically formed phallus along with an arched strap handle. Reddish orange surface is highly burnished with some fire-clouding and deposits present. Overall in good condition. Reassembled from numerous original pieces with restored breaks. Displays nicely. Custom metal tripod stand is included. Ex. private Florida collection.

Approx 5.5" tall x 8" across, 6" tall with stand


Painted Chancay Textile Chancay Painted Textile — Peru

900 AD - 1300 AD

Large painted Chancay textile panel from northern Peru. Dark cream base color, painted in tones of brown and sienna. Sectioned into blocks and decorated with alternating animal figures and geometric shapes. Overall in very good condition. Slightly frayed around the edges and one hole in the interior. Also has an interesting area of dark thread woven into the body of the fabric. A rare example and in generally fine condition for a painted textile. Paint is unusually strong and vivid. Could easily be framed and would display nicely.
Ex. Paul Clifford Collection.

Approx. 17" tall x 17" across


Colima Squash Vessel Colima Vessel — West Mexico

200 BC - 200 AD

Beautiful terracotta Colima squash vessel. Burnished surface, deep red color with heavy manganese deposits, encrusted and shows considerable root marks. An elegant shape with narrow base widening to a round squat body in the form of a noded squash, rim is flared. Vessels from Colima and the surrounding areas are known for their depictions of fruits and vegetables as they were common food sources. Overall in fine condition, would be choice save one small restored rim chip. It could possibly be cleaned, but I prefer the nice aged patina. A lovely example. Rare and desirable.

Approx. 6.5" across x 4.5" tall.


Columbian Urn Rio Magdalena Urn — Columbia

800 AD - 1200 AD

Large Tamalemeque urn from the Rio Magdalena region of Columbia. The top is a complete seated figure, arms and legs to the front, large square head with relief facial features. The lower portion is round-bottomed, decorated with relief designs of two bats and four perforated lugs near the rim. Overall in very good condition. Some repairs and restoration as would be expected. On the figural top, one leg is reglued along with a few stablized cracks on the back of the head. On the bottom, one bat head, 2 lugs and two rim chips are reglued, some fire-clouding on the back. There are also two small cracks near the rim. Otherwise it is stable and in remarkable condition for its size. The custom metal stand is included. Displays impressively. Ex. Harmer Rooke Galleries.

Note: I prefer not to ship this very large item. Pick-up only.

Urn with lid is 33" tall. With the stand, almost 45" tall


Teotihuacan Tripod Vessel Teotihuacan Tripod Vessel — Valley of Mexico

400 AD - 550 AD

A rare miniature Teotihuacan tripod vessel. The upper portion of the bowl was originally covered in white slip and finely incised with a court scene. The scene depicts what appears to be felines (possibly Jaguars) sitting in front of standing lords with ornate headdresses. Much of the exterior surface is eroded, but areas near the top are still quite visible. Around the bottom is a row of six molded heads, each with some wear, but facial details remain. It stands on three well-formed tripod legs. The interior shows a burnished black surface with deposits in the bottom, minor interior pitting near the rim. Intact, never broken, no restoration, but overall somewhat eroded. A nice example and rare for its size.

Approx. 3.5" tall x 3.25" across


Costa Rican Vessel Jalisco Figural Vessel — West Mexico

400 BC

Very early Jalisco effigy vessel dating to the Middle Formative Period. Depicts a standing figure with impressed details. A large vessel integrated into the back with a third support leg. The figure carries a basin (bowl) on his head, possibly used to burn incense. Light colored terracotta construction with no paint visible. A rare item from the period when shaft tombs were first developed. Overall in fine condition with restoration to the bowl and minor chipping at the rim of the rear vessel. See Hasso Von Winning's "Shaft Tomb Figures" for similar examples and info.

Approx. 7" tall


Nazca Olla Nazca Polychrome Olla — Peru

100 AD - 400 AD

Beautiful Nazca olla painted in multi-colored stripes. Elegant form and thin-walled construction, this is a Nazca vessel of exceptional quality. Overall in fine condition. A few repaired cracks and dings, but appears choice. Minor cleaning of salt and mineral deposits. Lightly burnished surface. Pretty!

Please refer to the "Restoration Services" area of this site to see before & after photos of the repairs on this piece.

Approx. 3.5" tall x 4.5" across


Nazca Bowl Nazca Polychrome Bowl — Peru

100 AD - 400 AD

Nazca vessel painted in multi-colored vertical stripes. Rare form with slightly corseted sides narrowing toward the rim. In very good condition with one restored break along with several repaired chips. Heavy mineral and salt deposits were lightly cleaned, some deposits remain. Unusual shape and vivid colors. Nicely burnished surface. Displays well.

Please refer to the "Restoration Services" area of this site to see before & after photos of the repairs on this piece.

Approx. 3.5" tall x 5" across


Turtle Pipe Aztec(?) Pipe — Central Mexico

1200 AD - 1400 AD

Buff terracotta pipe in the form of a turtle, its neck extended. From the post-classic period of Central Mexico. Most likey Aztec or Mixtec, possibly Huastec. This is a rare item, seldom seen and therefore difficult to attribute. Realistically sculpted with nice details. Finely incised patterns along the neck, shell, legs and tail. Overall in good condition. The head has been restored as are portions of 3 legs and the tail. Also, the rim of the bowl has been repaired. There is one glued clean break at the base of the neck that is hardly noticable. There is also a small nick on the neck, probably an excavation ding. Displays well.

Please refer to the "Restoration Services" area of this site to see before & after photos of the repairs on this piece.

Just over 4.5" long


Mixtec Bowl Mixtec Painted Bowl — Mexico

1200 AD - 1500 AD

Beautiful Mixtec shallow bowl from the post-classic period. Exterior is very nicely painted in bright white on red ground. Circles, lines and dots create a repeating serpent pattern around a central stylized avian image. Overall design is a representation of Quetzalcoatl (the feathered serpent), one of Mesoamerica's most important deities. The interior is a soft orange-tan with a white and red stripe at the rim. Repaired from 6 original pieces with a couple chips and the breaks restored. A few minor dings and scraps remain. An unusually fine example and a rare form. Nice manganese deposits.

Ex. Robert Sudmann Collection, Washington State

Please refer to the "Restoration Services" area of this site to see before & after photos of the repairs on this piece.

Approx 6.25" across x 1.75" tall


Inca Mace Inca Mace — Peru

1250 AD - 1450 AD

Nice Inca mace head carved from black hardstone, most likely basalt. Very unusual form. Most are round or star shaped, this square example is quite rare. Overall in excellent condition. Ex. Jim Bennett, well-known author and authenticator of ancient stone artifacts.

Approx 3" x 3"


Lambayeque Vessel Lambayeque Vessel — Peru

700 AD - 1150 AD

Large double-spout Lambayeque vessel in gray terracotta. Round body with flared footed base, tapered spouts connected by a pierced bridge handle. Two styilzed faces adorne each side just below the spouts. Moderate deposits and encrustations with minor fire-clouding present. Both spouts reattached and the handle restored. Two small chips repaired on the base. Also has a small 1/4" probe hole on the lower body. Overall in good condition. A nice large example that displays well. Elegant form.

Please refer to the "Restoration Services" area of this site to see before & after photos of the repairs on this piece.

Approx 9.5" across x 8.25" tall


Chancay Weaving Tool Chancay Bone Weaving Tool — Peru

1100 AD - 1400 AD

Fine Chancay bone "weavers wand". Used in the weaving of textiles, this is a rare bone example in a spotted feline motif. Nicely carved with a rich patina, edges are worn smooth from heavy use. Small hole drilled near the tail. A beautiful utilitarian object. In excellent condition, only one tiny chip at the tip.

Approx. 9" long


Cajamarca Bowl Cajamarca Bowl — Peru

800 AD - 1000 AD

Nice, thin-walled Cajamarca Bowl, rounded body with low, footed base. Although from a Cajamarca site, this piece shows strong Recuay influence. Interior has three orange on tan painted panels with highly adorned stylized human faces. Exterior has repeating panels of orange and black painted in negative resist style, now mostly faded. Repaired from 4 large pieces, breaks are restored. Nice deposits.

Approx. 6" wide X 3.5" tall


Maya Swimmer Bowl Maya Bowl — El Salvador

550 AD - 900 AD

Large Maya Swimmer bowl from El Salvador. Exterior has a lower band of two prone figures thought to represent the Hero Twins "Hunahpu" and "Xbalanque" on their journey through Xibalba, the Maya Underworld. An upper band of nicely detailed Copador glyphs around the rim. The interior has a band of repeating glyphs and concentric circles. Painted in red, orange and black over cream. Overall in good condition, minor color fading and has a few reglued shards with restored cracks, but all original. Burnished surface inside and out with deposits and root marks.

Approx. 8" wide X 3" tall


Narino Footed Bowl Narino Bowl — Columbia

1250 AD - 1500 AD

A fine Narino footed pedestal bowl from the Tuza cultural complex of the Columbian Highlands region. Nicely burnished and decorated with stylized bird heads on the interior. Boldly painted in black and red over cream slip. Exterior is buff clay with nice deposits. Broken and cleanly reglued from several original pieces with only minor restoration over the breaks.

Approx. 7" wide X 3" tall


Oche Whistle Moche Whistle — Peru

100 AD - 200 AD

Rare terracotta 2-note Moche whistle. A couple of repaired breaks and one whistle mechanism restored to working condition, but all original with only minor restoration. Has clear tone(s). Unusual form with nice deposits.

Approx. 5" X 3"


Zoomorphic Vessel Maya Zoomorphic Vessel — El Salvador

100 BC - 400 AD

Early Maya terracotta vessel in animal form with its tail forming the spout. Some orange paint remaining with faint geometric designs visible. Has what appears to be a name handwritten on the side "Nyapa Suchinango" (possibly a site location?). A few restored chips around the rim and minor wear to the tip of the spout, else in fine condition.

5" tall


Chimu Bird Vessel Chimu Bird Vessel — Peru

800 AD - 1200 AD

Chimu blackware terracotta vessel in the form of a Parrot. Nicely detailed head and body, short spout with wide handle connected to the bird's back. Thin hairline crack between the head and the spout and a stabilized stress crack on the bottom. Other minor repairs.

6.5" tall x 7" across


Chimu Stirrup Vessel Chimu Stirrup Vessel — Peru

600 AD - 1000 AD

Fine Chimu blackware terracotta stirrup vessel. Rare form and unusual in that the stirrup handle is flattend on the sides, almost square. Tip of spout has few tiny chips missing, otherwise in excellent condition.

Approx. 9" tall x 5" across


Mayan Temple Fragment Maya Temple Fragment — Mexico

600 AD - 900 AD

Rare carved stone architectural feature from a Maya temple. Depicts two opposing figures(?). Probably from the Yucatan area of Mexico. Repaired from two pieces with glue residue from a third piece (now missing) on one side. Shows minor surface wear from exposure to the elements, but a nice example, seldom seen.

Approx. 6.5" across x 6.5" tall


Maya Dog Fragment Maya Dog Deity — Quiche Region, Guatemala

550 AD - 700 AD

Large head fragment depicting the Maya Dog deity. Highly detailed fragment, appears to have been broken from a much larger piece. Nice example in fine condition. Display stand included.

Approx. 5" x 5"


Maya Ocarina Maya Ocarina — El Salvador

600 AD

Terracotta Maya Ocarina (whistle) in the form of an anthropomorphic deer. Antlers bent forward, ridged crest down forehead and small pointed snout. Wearing earrings, collar, bracelets and loincloth. Some remains of red pigment. Both legs reattached, one at the knee the other at the hip. Mouthpiece to (non-working) whistle is missing as well as a small portion of one hand. Ex. Arte Primitivo

Approx. 6" tall


Rattle Vessel Figural Rattle — Costa Rica

400 AD - 800 AD

Cute little burnished terracotta rattle figure from Costa Rica's Atlantic Watershed zone. Chubby body with arms held to chest, wearing a necklace and hat. Smiling expression and pierced eyes. Nice condition with only a few small chips missing.

Note: See page 217 of Paul Clifford's "Art of Costa Rica" from the Arthur M. Sackler Collection for similar examples and additional information.

Approx. 4" tall


Hunchback Vessel Hunchback Figural Vessel — Costa Rica

400 AD - 800 AD

Extremely nice hunchback figure/vessel from the Guanacaste-Nicoya Zone of Costa Rica. Burnished terracotta squatting male, executed in red and black zoned bichrome technique. Rare form. Exceptional artifact in excellent condition, no breaks or chips. Only minor abraisions and paint loss.

Approx. 7" tall


Ocos Vessel Ocos Figural Vessel — Pacific Coast, Mexico

1500 BC - 1200 BC

Exceptionally rare pre-Mayan vessel from the Ocos ceramic complex of Mexico's Pacific coast. Reddish paint on buff terracotta, coffeebean style eyes. Chipped nose and minor dings at the rim and base, otherwise excellent condition. Nice deposits. Truly a rare artifact from one of the earilest Mesoamerican cultures. Ex. Robert Morris

Approx. 8" tall x 4.5" across


Stone Mace Head Stone Mace — Panama/Costa Rica

400 AD - 800 AD

Greenish-gray stone mace (club) head in bird motif. Some dings and chips as would be expected. Nice example. Ex. Paul Clifford Collection

6" across


Small Celt Birdform Celt — Costa Rica

800 AD - 1200 AD

Small celt figure in bird form. Nice gray serpentine stone pendant with light green speckling. Drilled suspension holes. Small chip on blade (tail), else excellent condition. ex. Arte Primitivo

Approx 1.75" tall x 1" wide


Condor Amulet Condor Amulet — Costa Rica

800 AD - 1200 AD

Carved gray-green serpentine bird (Condor) amulet. Nicely polished. Double perforated for suspension. Easily mounted and wearable.

Approx 2.25" wide x 1.25" tall


Mezcala Temple Model Mezcala Temple Model — Guerrero, Mexico

300 AD

Terracotta Mezcala temple model. Course tan clay with traces of white pigment. Usually seen in stone, this terracotta example is quite rare. The column on the right has been restored, otherwise nice condition with a few minor inclusions due to impurities in the clay. Ex. Hank Johnson

Just over 6.5" tall x 3.5" wide x 0.5" thick


Bone Flute Chancay Bone Flute — Peru

1100 AD - 1400 AD

Chancay bone flute with four finger holes. Smoothy polished with rich patina. Two (somewhat crudely drawn) birds carved into the back. Fine example in excellent condition. Ex. Paul Clifford Collection

Approx 7"


Skull Pendant Chavin Bone Pendant — Peru

1000 BC - 200 BC

Nice bone pendant with skull motif. Minor chipping on back, else in excellent condition with warm patina with tiny bits of red pigment remaining. Rare example. Ex. Paul Clifford Collection

Just under 1.5"


Lime Spoon Silver Chancay Lime Spatula — Peru

1100 AD - 1400 AD

Silver scoop-ended lime scraper topped with a long-beaked hummingbird. Originally used in coca chewing rituals. Cracked along the shaft but stable and otherwise excellent condition. Ex. Paul Clifford Collection

3" long


gold nose ring Large Salinar Gold Nose Ring — Peru

400 BC - 200 BC

Gold nose ring, larger and heavier than most and in nice condition, with only a couple of small dings along the edge. Could easily be mounted and worn as a pendant. Ex. Paul Clifford Collection.

Approx 2.75" x 2.25"


gold nose ring Small Salinar Gold Nose Ring — Peru

400 BC - 200 BC

Another fine gold nose ring. Thin crescent shaped hammered gold and in excellent condition. Ex. Hank Johnson

Approx 1.25" x 1"


bronze bell Bronze Bird Bell - Moche — Peru

400 AD - 1200 AD

Moche bronze bell pendant. Heavily cast in the form of a vulture. Darkened patina with suspension loop under the bird's neck. Bell sounds great, suspension loop almost worn through, but still wearable. Fine condition with some green encrustation. A very rare item. Ex. Paul Clifford Collection.

Just over 3" long


Ancient Native American Pottery

Below are examples of pottery vessels from various ancient Native American cultures. Of course, each item is guaranteed to be authentic and as described. Any known repairs or restoration will be fully described. These artifacts were found on private deeded property. Each item is accompanied with a Certificate of Release and Disclosure Document which guarantees the item to be authentic and acquired legally according to all State, Federal and Indian laws.

Mimbres Bowl Mimbres Bowl — New Mexico

1000 AD - 1250 AD

A lovely, medium sized Mimbres bowl with a repeating black on white geometric pattern around the interior. Condition is fair, broken and reassembled from several original pieces. The missing areas (approx. 35%) were replaced and the paint was touched-up as needed.

Please refer to the "Restoration Services" area of this site to see before & after photos of the repair.

Approx. 9" across x 4" tall


Casas Grandes Bowl Casas Grandes Bowl — Southern New Mexico - Northern Mexico

1200 AD

Olla shaped vessel on rounded base with tapered walls and slightly rolled rim. Geometrically painted design in red and black over ochre ground. Two sets of two perforated holes at the rim for suspension. One large shard and a small chip reglued along clean breaks, else in excellent condition. Displays nicely. Ex. Arte Primitivo

approx. 6" tall x 6" across


Mounds Bowl & Tool Mounds Indian Bowl and Tool — Western Ohio

1000 AD - 1200 AD

Large Mounds Indian bowl. Reassembled from several original pieces with deposits and incrustations. Overall very good comdition with only minor dings. Elegant form, displays nicely. Along with a bone implement found at the same site. Large (animal?) bone with a hole near the end, probably a tool used to straighten the shafts of arrows. Ex. Hank Johnson

Bowl approx. 6.5" tall x 7" across
Bone Tool approx. 5.5" long


Mississippian Bowl Mississippian Bowl — Cross County, Arkansas

500 AD - 900 AD

Exceptional Middle Mississippian blackware "Fortune Noded" four-lobed shaman's rattle pot. Round bowl with four large noded lobes, each containing rattles. Very rare and beautiful. In excellent, intact condition. A few minor dings but overall choice. Ex. Rex Arrowsmith

Approx. 3" tall x 6" across


Shipibo Pottery

Although not dating to Pre-Columbian times, Shipibo pottery is artistically crafted, beautiful and well deserves to be appreciated and collected. Pottery of this type is still being made today by the women of the Shipibo natives of the Peruvian Amazon. Coil construction and hand-painted intricate designs are sophisticated interpretations of their cosmic beliefs - that the jungle rivers follow the same course as the stars. The pieces shown here are rare, older examples of Shipibo ceramics.

Shipibo Bowl Shipibo Bowl — Northern Peru

20th Century

Small Shipibo polychrome painted pottery bowl. Likely dating to the 1950's or early 1960's, it's a nice older example, thin walled and beautifully painted. Typical orange and black tribal designs on a creamy-white background. The interior is solid black. Heavily stained from extensive use. Great patina! In near perfect condition. One restored rim chip and a repaired hairline crack, otherwise near choice. Some paint loss and surface staining as would be expected.

Just over 4" across x 2" tall


Shipibo Vessel Shipibo Vessel — Northern Peru

20th Century

Nicely decorated polychrome Shipibo figural vessel. Intricately painted in the typical style. A face in relief on the upper section. Black & deep orange piant on a cream background. The bottom is in orange with minor fire-clouding. A fine example in near excellent condition. Only a few small dings and scrapes as would be expected. No breaks or cracks. Probably dates to the 3rd quarter of the 20 century. Pretty.

Approx 7.5" across x 7.5" tall


Shipibo Bowl Shipibo Bowl — Northern Peru

Mid 20th Century

Large Shipibo painted bowl. Extremely thin-walled bowl painted in typical (older) style designs. Bold geometric painting inside & out. Brown & orange paint over off-white on the exterior. The interior has brown lines on a buff ground. This is by far the highest quality piece of Shipibo pottery I have ever seen. Obviously executed by one their best artisans. Tiny chips missing at the rim. Some exterior staining and minor paint loss, mostly around the rim, but intact witn no breaks or cracks. Remarkable condition considering it's unusually thin construction. A real beauty!

Approx 10.75" across x 4" tall


Shipibo Ancestoral Figure Shipibo Ancestral Figure Vessel — Northern Peru

Mid 20th Century

Huge and impressive terracotta female figural vessel. Relief arms and breasts, beautifully painted and nicely detailed. This piece represents the pregnant "Moon Goddess" ready to give birth to the stars. Faint crazing all-over but in excellent condition with only minor dings. An imposing piece that displays dramatically.

Approx 16" across x 18" tall


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