200 BCE–200 CE
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General Description

The preclassic cultures of West Mexico occupied the modern states of Jalisco, Nayarit, and Colima, where artisans produced a variety of ceramic figures in distinctive regional styles. This ceramic female figure is from Late Preclassic (Late Formative) Mexico and represents the Chupicuaro style. The figure’s breasts are indicated, and she wears earspools, a necklace, and hair ornamentation among her elaborate hairstyle, signifying she is likely of elite status. The female figure, a favorite theme for Mesoamerica’s earliest ceramic artists, probably alluded to hopes for human and agricultural fertility.

Elaine Higgins Smith, Digital Collections Content Coordinator, 2016.

Adapted from

Gallery text [West Mexico], A. H. Meadows Galleries.