Sunday, December 14, 2008

08/09 Academic Decathlon Image #17

Beaker, Maya Civilization, 600 A.D., Polychrome ceramic, 7 x 5 in. (Pre-Hispanic Art)

Have you ever made a pot using the coiling technique? You role out a long snake of clay and coil it into the shape you want. Then you use water and your fingers or a tool to smooth the surfaces. It's a fun way to make a pot! The Mayan potters used this technique because they didn't have a potter's wheel. After forming the shape, they would let it dry until it was leather hard, then paint it with "slip" (minerals and earth materials mixed with water to make a kind of paint.) They know this was made in the Classic period because it has so many colors.

Two males are seated, dressed in elaborate textiles and jewelry. They have make-up and headdresses. The smoke that seems to come from the figure in the front is meant to indicate speech or communication. The heiroglyphs above their heads could detail their identity or the nature of the ritual. Hooked noses were aesthetically pleasing to them. The figures are stylized but look naturalistic.

Here's a quiz you can take about the Mayan and a beaker. See how you do! There is also what appears to be a high school PowerPoint on the web that is related to the work chosen for AcDec - check it out! Scroll down the presentation to see the beaker slide, but check out the others! It has some great information in it!

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