This piece is a sculpted vessel in bright brown -coloured terracotta. The animal is reclining and somewhat curled up. The forms are rounded and the piece has intentionally received a naturalistic treatment. The details have been worked with fine incisions, for example in the snout and the eyes, while the mouth suggests a faint smile. The whole piece transmits tenderness. There is a circular opening on the lower back so that liquids could be poured from this vessel when serving as a recipient in rituals.

Between the years 150 B.C. and 650 A.D., the period that covers the rise and fall of the city of Teotihuacan, various styles of pottery flourished which bear witness to the different activities of the inhabitants of this metropolis and of the interchanges that they carried out with other peoples, for example those in Puebla or Guerrero. These interchanges involved vessels both from the Mayan area as well as from the Gulf of Mexico and the west of the country.

The formal and decorative wealth of the Teotihuacan ceramic work reached its highest expression in the Jolalpan phase (350-550A.D.) thanks to the sophisticated techniques employed and the variety of designs – all bearing witness to the grandeur of this culture.

In the period we are dealing with styles of stucco painting began to be established, and this was applied to jars, vessels and cylinders. The wealth of colours and the variety of the designs stand out. These range from human and zoomorphic figures like dogs, to a wide variety of symbols and geometric forms that make these containers unique pieces.


- AA.VV, Sculpture of Ancient West Mexico. Los Angeles County Museum of Art. 1970.
- AA.VV, Trésors de la céramique précolombienne dans les collections Barbier-Mueller. 2003.
- VON WINNING, Hasso, Pre-Columbian Art of Mexico and Central America.

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