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    American Indians

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    Cast gold pendant of a winged shaman, from Popayn, Colombia, 100-1500. The figure on this pendant combines human attributes with the outstretched wings of a bird. These elements allude to shamanic powers of flight. After careful ritual preparations, the shaman ingests powerful hallucinogens which release his soul and enables him to 'fly' into other dimensions of the cosmos. Under the influence of such substances, the shaman believes that he can transform himself into an animal or bird and assume its powers and attributes.The Spanish chronicles and documents of the colonial period record the use of hallucinogenic drugs by the people inhabiting the northern Andes including Colombia.This pendant was cast in tumbaga, an alloy of gold and copper, using the lost-wax technique. Ethno, +5803


    Cast gold lime-flask of a seated female from Colombia, Quimbaya, c600-c1100 AD. The cast gold lime-flasks made by the Quimbaya culture are wonderful examples of the astonishing virtuosity achieved by pre-Columbian artisans. Various types of Quimbaya gold artefacts were adorned with human figures, which were sometimes portrayed wearing lime-flasks hanging from their neck. The flasks held lime obtained from burning and grinding seashells and the alkaline lime was chewed with coca leaves to release their active stimulant and enhance clear, contemplative thinking. This lime-flask was cast by the lost-wax method. Ethno, 1940.Am11.2


    Treasure of Senor de Sipan: head, gold.


    Funeral mask,gold,from Lambayeque,Peru.


    Gold earrings with turquois,corals and lapis lazuli. Mochica Culture.


    Pectoral,from the Tolima region in Columbia. Metalwork in lost wax process (cire perdue). Alloy of gold,copper and silver,24,4 x 25,7 cm Inv.6.029.


    Labret (lip-plug) from Coxcatlan near Puebla, Mexico. Such plugs were part of male ornaments, and marked social status. The were worn through the pierced lower lip. Late post-classical period, 15th or early 16th. Gold and rock-crystal. Length 6.2 cm. Inv. 59.989