Post by George J. Haas on Feb 18, 2011 8:17:57 GMT -5
The following set of artifacts reveals just a portion of a vast cache of split-faced sculptures that were produced throughout the cultures of Mesoamerica.
The first example is a fragmented head of a Zapotec child that was associated with the god of death (Figure 1). This split face is classified as a funerary head chronicling the eternal process of human destiny from the vitality of youth to the disintegration of death in one startling image. When the image is split and each side mirrored, the left side features a sullen-faced child wearing a frown. The right side has a skull-like face displaying a distinct grin.
Post by George J. Haas on Feb 18, 2011 8:20:02 GMT -5
A second example of the Mesoamerican perception of duality is found in a striking pottery mask from a grave at Tlatilco, Mexico (Figure 2).
One half of this bifurcated mask is a human face with a protruding tongue. The companion side features the halved skull of a feline, possibly a jaguar. The feline skull has a prominent set of teeth and displays a “knob” feature on the side of the head that looks like the remnants of an ear.
Post by George J. Haas on Feb 18, 2011 8:21:08 GMT -5
This third example is another pre-Columbian two-faced mask. This bifurcated mask depicts the halved portions of a human and jaguar visage. Hopefully, now that you have become familiar with this split-faced technique, these two separate facial features are so obvious that there is no need to mirror the two faces (Figure 3).
Post by williamsaunders on Apr 2, 2019 12:37:26 GMT -5
The last one is very interesting George as it does not conform to the others we have seen. I would have expected only half a tongue and it being more centered. Great seeing the profile from either side.