Lot 1
  • 1

Middle Paracas Polychrome Double-Spout Vessel, Ocucaje ca. 500-300 B.C.

12,000 - 18,000 USD
bidding is closed


  • clay
  • Diameter: 7 3/4 in ( 19.7 cm)
thickly painted with a form of the Oculate Being on each side, the large frontal face marked by ringed eyes, whiskered mouth, arching streamers and slightly raised snout, the detached undulating pelt body curling to the side, with a falcon head as one spout, and the handle finely decorated with concentric squares, the basal band embellished with a guilloche design.


Peter I. Hirsch
Morton and Estelle Sosland Collection, acquired from the above in 1967
Sotheby's, New York, May 15, 2009, lot 107, consigned by the above


Kansas City, Kansas City Collects, A Selection of Works of Art Privately owned in the Greater Kansas City Area, The Nelson Gallery and Atkins Museum, January 22- February 28, 1965, Fig. 197a

Catalogue Note

The richly painted and incised double-spout vessels of the Paracas region show an iconographic shift from the pottery of northern Chavin featuring condors and fanged felines, to stylized pampas cats and falcons. The feline-inspired Oculate Being is well illustrated on each side of this vessel with characteristic ringed eyes, whiskered mouth and a snout in faint relief. The detached bodies sinuously curve around the shoulder. It is made in classic Paracas technique of an elegantly burnished dark gray surface enlivened by the deep colored resin paint applied after firing. See Sawyer (1966: fig. 110), and Lapiner (1976: fig. 192), for similar examples.