Standing Woman Artist: Unknown

100 B.C.–A.D. 350

Art of the Ancient Americas

The potters of Nayarit, a region of West Mexico, specialized in the production of large, hollow clay figures, often in male-female pairs, perhaps intended to portray married couples. These figures probably served as grave offerings. This figure represents a standing nude woman, her gender made evident by her large, widely set breasts. Her head and torso are disproportionately large, while her legs are short and her arms very slender. In her outstretched right hand, she holds a small bowl containing a ring of small coils around a ball. The artist has paid particular attention to the treatment of the woman's jewelry—necklace, armbands, earrings, and nose ring—and other body adornments, such as the circular groupings of raised bumps on each shoulder.




29 1/4 × 14 1/2 × 6 1/2 in. (74.3 × 36.8 × 16.5 cm)

Credit Line

Gift of the Olsen Foundation

Accession Number



Protoclassic Period


Note: This electronic record was created from historic documentation that does not necessarily reflect the Yale University Art Gallery’s complete or current knowledge about the object. Review and updating of records is ongoing.



Carlebach Gallery, New York, October 1, 1955; Fred H. Olsen (1891–1986), and Florence Quittenton Olsen, Guilford, Conn.; gift in 1958 to Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Conn.
  • Elise K. Kenney, ed., Handbook of the Collections: Yale University Art Gallery (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 1992), 314, ill
  • George A. Kubler, ed., Pre-Columbian Art of Mexico and Central America (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 1986), 29, 175, 340, no. 391, color pl. 10, fig. 219
Object copyright
Additional information

Object/Work type

human figures (visual works)


hollow women

Technical metadata and APIs


Open in Mirador

View IIIF manifest

The International Image Interoperability Framework, or IIIF, is an open standard for delivering high-quality, attributed digital objects online at scale. Visit to learn more

Linked Art

API response for this object

Linked Art is a Community working together to create a shared Model based on Linked Open Data to describe Art.