"Smiling Jaina" - Pre-Columbian Mayan, terra cotta/clay Jaina statue

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Seller: irvinwindsong (152) 100%, Location: Las Cruces, New Mexico, Ships to: US & many other countries, Item: 192986195805 We obtained this statue when we closed out professor's estate in 2017. Before passing away, the professor traveled extensively across the world and Central and South America, as he himself had explored a variety of shamanistic religions and rituals, evidenced by his extensive collection of artifacts, books, and letters describing his spiritual journeys. It is not surprising to me, then, that this man of culture and travel would have obtained an authentic Jaina figurine in his travels. The statue is about 10 inches tall. It weights 1 Lb, 8.9 ounces. It may be ancient or pre-Columbian. It does strike remarkable likeness to other pre-Columbian Mayan figures sculpted from clay, and available for viewing on the Internet, particularly in the Sotheby's auctions for Jaina art. Additionally, the figurine for sale fits several of the distinguishing characteristics as described in "Maya Anthropomorphic Figurines from Jaina Island, Campeche", a detailed study of Mesoamerican Art by Christopher Corson. In his study, Corson constructs a classification scheme for the variety of figurines that emerge from Jaina and Campeche. Additionally, a detailed reading will show that this statue bares similarity to Corson's Jaina Group E, and shares characteristics with Corson's Jaina Group B. For instance, figurines from E have a medium tempered orange color, stand at an average height of 6 inches, are typically posed in a seated and cross-legged positions; have rolled fillets and bands laid horizontally, have an extended nose bridge, ear ornaments, and areas of exposed flesh are painted red. The figurine for sale shares all of these characteristics. The fillets, Corson writes, "generally takes the form of thick rolls, bands, or cigar shaped fillets laid horizontally across the head covering and curved downward at the sides to follow the contour of the top of the head" (Corson, 1976). The piece for sale exhibits this cigar shaped fillet on the head. There appears to be a small hole right behind the ear of the figurine, which could imply that it was originally meant to be used as a whistle, which is a common feature of some figurines from Jaina. The piece shares other striking similarities with Groups B & C, because the head and eyes seem to be cast in molds (or stamped), which would explain the acute geometrical similarity between the eyes. The legs and arms have been fashioned by hand and applied to the body. The toes and fingers are finely fashioned by small incisions made by the artist. Other described attributes include the curvature of the back of the head away from the neck vector, which is shared with these classifications. Since this piece lacks provenance, it would be wise to consult with an anthropologist before placing a bid for purchase. Still it is my belief, based on the evidence in Corson, correspondence with the Los Angeles Museum of Art, and other sources including the listings of Sotheby's in pre-Colombian art, that the piece for sale is an authentic item and should be treated as such. If this is indeed the case, the piece in question is very likely more than a thousand years old. Most intriguing, to me anyway, is the fact that the man depicted in this statue is smiling. For this reason I have named him "Smiling Jaina." It is rare to find a statue of this kind looking rather jocular. Thank you for your interest. Buy with confidence. Condition: Condition overall is good. It appears two digits on the right hand have been half chipped away. Likewise, about 30 percent of the left foot has been chipped away. At some point in its history, the neck and right arm were cracked and reattached. Likewise, the right arm was cracked and reattached above and below the elbow. Statue is solid and not liable to break after these repairs. See photos for detail., Material: Terracota, Provenance: Scholarly

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