Arts of the Americas
Painting, particularly on ceramic vessels, was the primary art form among the Maya. This plate is representative of the “turkey vulture” pottery tradition, a regional style that was created for a broad audience and used almost exclusively in burials. The vessel’s interior is decorated with the Muan bird, the messenger of the lords of the underworld. The “kimi” glyph, or death sign, emanates from the bird’s head just above the beak. On the interior rim, two centipedes swim in the underworld’s black waters.
4 9/16 x 17 11/16 x 17 11/16 in. (11.6 x 44.9 x 44.9 cm) (show scale)
Dick S. Ramsay Fund
Prior to 1939, provenance not yet documented; by 1939, acquired by William Spratling of New York, NY, New Orleans, LA, and Taxco, Mexico; 1939, purchased from William Spratling by the Brooklyn Museum.
Large polychrome tripod plate with a Muan bird (turkey vulture) design in the center and a centipede along the interior rim.
This item is not on view
Maya. Tripod Plate, ca. 593-731. Ceramic, pigment, 4 9/16 x 17 11/16 x 17 11/16 in. (11.6 x 44.9 x 44.9 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Dick S. Ramsay Fund, 39.57. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 39.57_view01_PS11.jpg)
overall, 39.57_view01_PS11.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph, 2022
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