Property from an American Private Collection
NAYARIT SEATED MALE FIGURE, IXTLÁN DEL RIO STYLE PROTOCLASSIC, CIRCA 100 BC-AD 250
Height: 13 ½ in (34.4 cm)
Very good overall condition. No obvious breaks and repairs. Consistent pigment and coloring details overall. Nice areas of black manganese on the face and body.
In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective qualified opinion.
NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING CONDITION OF A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD "AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF SALE PRINTED IN THE CATALOGUE.
D. Daniel Michel, acquired in 1957 (inventory no. 57:024)
Ancient Art of the New World, New York, acquired from the above
American Private Collection, acquired in 1991
Alan Wardwell, Primitive Art in Chicago Collections, Chicago, 1960, cat. no. 27
The Art Institute of Chicago, 1959, temporary loan from D. Daniel Michel
The Art Institute of Chicago, Primitive Art in Chicago Collections, November 16, 1960-January 2, 1961
The highly decorated and evocative figure is in mourning, shown by the scarified cheeks from the ritual of cheek-piercing and his slender taut body from fasting, showing his ribcage and spine. Townsend identified the vertical incisions of cheek-piercing as one of the expressions of mourning associated with funerary ceremonies. Townsend notes "During mourning the living and the deceased constitute a special group temporarily suspended between the worlds of the living and the dead. In some cases, this phase invokes the ritual cutting of hair, inflicting wounds, and the use of some professional mourners." (Townsend, "Before Gods, Before Kings", in Townsend, ed. Ancient West Mexico, Art and Archaeology of the Unknown Past, 1998, p. 133).