About this object

History of use

Shipibo pottery derives from an artistic tradition which appears to be indigenous to the Amazon Basin (Willey) reaching its fullest development among the Panoan speakers of the upper Amazon, such as the Shipibo. The geometric designs found on this pottery are also found on wooden objects such as paddles, textiles, and used for body decoration. According to Salas, these patterns derive from a cross and serpent theme. Characteristically, designs are formed by heavy and fine red and black lines on cream. Traditionally, uses ranged from pots for boiling meat and fish, bowls for eating, Chicha vessels for storing beer and effigy vessels for female puberty rites. The expansion into the art or tourist market is evidenced by the establishment of a pottery school, and individual recognition of a few potters for their skill (Salas).

Cultural context

pottery; tourist art

Physical description

Round, polycrome bowl which constricts steeply in lower third to 8cm. Flat orange base. Brown/black line decoration on cream slip on outer surface. Inner surface red/brown. Thick lines divide outer surface into 6 main sections, these lines zigzag to 't' shape at centres of 4 sections, other 2 sections have rows of triangles, top and bottom. Thinner lines run parallel to thicker lines and thinner form various shapes, some with crosses or lines at centre. Brown/black line at rim. Resin coated, chipped at rim.