Square Bowl with Pampas Cats

500–400 BC

The Cleveland Museum of Art

The Cleveland Museum of Art
Cleveland, United States

The Paracas often decorated their ceramics with geometricized representations of the native Pampas cat, a small, reclusive, wild feline that lives on the margins of agricultural fields, where it preys on the rodents and other pests that are a farmer’s bane. Thus, the ancients seem to have linked it to nature’s fertility and, by extension, human prosperity and continuity.

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  • Title: Square Bowl with Pampas Cats
  • Date Created: 500–400 BC
  • Physical Dimensions: Overall: 9 x 18 x 17.5 cm (3 9/16 x 7 1/16 x 6 7/8 in.)
  • Provenance: Margrith Brenner, Zurich, Switzerland, sold to Private Collector, Private Collector, New York, NY, sold to the Cleveland Museum of Art, The Cleveland Museum of Art, Cleveland, OH
  • Type: Ceramic
  • Rights: CC0
  • External Link: https://clevelandart.org/art/2021.130
  • Medium: Ceramic, post-fire paint
  • Fun Fact: The animal shown on this bowl is the Pampas cat, a small, wild feline.
  • Department: Art of the Americas
  • Culture: Central Andes, South Coast, Paracas people
  • Credit Line: J.H. Wade Trust Fund
  • Collection: AA - Andes
  • Accession Number: 2021.130

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