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colombia/ecuador - gold figure | by Xuan Che
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colombia/ecuador - gold figure

Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC.


Standing Figure, 1st century B.C. - A.D. 1st century

Colombia or Ecuador; Tolita/Tumaco

Gold (hammered); H. 9 in. (22.9 cm)

Jan Mitchell and Sons Collection, Gift of Jan Mitchell, 1995 (1995.427)


The three-dimensional figures of the Tolita-Tumaco area are among the most striking of Precolumbian gold objects. The present example is particularly distinguished by its fancy nose ornament, evidence that some form of headdress was once present, and by the position of the hands, which originally held objects now missing. The feet too have been lost. Made of many pieces of high-quality sheet gold, the figure may have been clothed for special occasions. The Tolita-Tumaco style area crosses the Colombia-Ecuador border along the humid Pacific coast.

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Taken on December 30, 2005