Female Figure of the Kilia Type (Front)


The J. Paul Getty Museum

The J. Paul Getty Museum
Los Angeles, United States

Female figures were made throughout the Aegean basin during the prehistoric period, including in the region of ancient Anatolia (present-day Turkey). This figure represents a highly stylized standing nude female. Her bulbous head, long neck, and flat body are characteristic of the Kilia type of female figurines, named after the village in northwest Turkey where the first examples were found. Carved from translucent white marble, these figures typically have carefully detailed eyes, noses, and ears. Although the ears and nose of this statuette are defined by carving, the eyes originally would have been enhanced with paint. An incised triangle emphasizing the pubic area confirms the statuette’s identity as female. Additional incisions on the front of the figure outline the tops of the thighs, while a horizontal line accents the hips across the back. Although the Kilia type statuettes of women are considerably earlier in date than related figures produced in the Cyclades, they are probably also linked with fertility and the life cycle, a central spiritual concern in the ancient Mediterranean.


  • Title: Female Figure of the Kilia Type (Front)
  • Creator: Unknown
  • Date Created: 4500–3500 B.C.
  • Location Created: Anatolia (present-day Turkey)
  • Physical Dimensions: 14.3 × 5.4 × 3.6 cm (5 5/8 × 2 1/8 × 1 7/16 in.)
  • Type: Female figure
  • External Link: Find out more about this object on the Museum website.
  • Medium: Marble
  • Terms of Use: Open Content
  • Number: 88.AA.122
  • Culture: Near Eastern (Anatolian)
  • Credit Line: The J. Paul Getty Museum, Villa Collection, Malibu, California
  • Creator Display Name: Unknown
  • Classification: Sculpture (Visual Works)

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