Maya Bird Sello Stamp

c. 200-800 AD
$388 USD
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W: 1.5" D: 1.25" H: 2.5"
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Stamps, or sellos, such as this one were common during the pre-Columbian period in Mesoamerica and most popular during the Formative Period that spanned the years between 1200-800 B.C. The primary use of sellos is unknown, but they are believed to have been used to decorate pottery, textiles or to make temporary tattoos, most likely for ceremonial or religious purposes.

Made of clay or terracotta, and occasionally of stone and wood, sellos displayed various iconographic motifs. Common themes include abstract and figurative designs, anthropomorphic figures, flora and fauna, and geometric forms. Here we have a ceramic carving of a bird in flight. This sello appears to be handmade, though the majority were produced using molds. Displayed on a metal stand, we’ve elevated this functional object into a small work of sculpture.

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