Head of a ram

This terracotta is modeled in the shape of a ram’s head. The snout is softly modeled by hand and his two horns form coils to either side of his head. A decorative band with punch-marked floral decoration on it divides the snout from the area of the head with the spiral horns. The horns are decorated with lines and encircle a donut shaped element in the center. A floral motif is between the two above the decorative band and other punch-marked floral forms decorate his snout at the top and at each cheek. His eyes are incised in a diamond pattern with a circular center and his nostrils are simple indentations.
Artist Unknown, India, Bengal
1st century
Throughout the history of Indian art, animal figures were often depicted with a sense of naturalism, as seen here. With very simple means the artist has given us a convincing figure of a ram’s head. He has modeled the clay by hand, using a sharp tool to punch decorations, much as one would stamp designs into leather.
Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Leo S. Figiel and Dr. and Mrs. Steven J. Figiel
Sunday, August 14, 2022