An Amlash Terracotta Bird Vessel, Iron Age I-II, ca. 1400 - 800 BCE


Occasionally ceramic vessels buried with the deceased seem to have been fashioned exclusively for placement in the tombs. One of the most characteristic ceramic forms associated with the label "Amlash" is a hollow vessel fashioned in the form of an animal. In this charming example, the elongated form takes on the shape of a bird, with red paint decoration to each side suggesting wings.

Dimensions: Height: 4 inches (10 cm), Length: 8 1/4 inches (21 cm)

Condition: Head professionally reattached, otherwise complete and in very good condition overall.

Provenance: The Hauge Collection of Ancient & Iranian Art, assembled between 1962 and 1966. Foreign service brothers, Victor and Osborne Hauge, together with their wives Takako and Gratia, assembled their collection of Persian, Japanese, Chinese, and Southeast Asian works of fine and folk art while stationed overseas with the US government after WWII. In consultation with academics and dealers, the Hauges assembled over two decades of what former Freer Gallery of Art director Harold Stern described in 1957 as "without doubt one of the finest private collections in the world". Victor and Takako published Folk Traditions in Japanese Art to coincide with a traveling exhibition held from 1978 at the Cleveland Museum of Art; Japan House Gallery, New York; and Asian Art Museum, San Francisco. Much of their collection was donated to the Freer Gallery of Art and Arthur M. Sackler Gallery at the Smithsonian Institute culminating in an exhibition and published catalogue in 2000. The balance of the collection, including this object, was inherited by descent in 2016.

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