Panel with Supernatural Feline Artist: Unknown

A.D. 200–900

Art of the Ancient Americas

This sumptuously attired human in jaguar costume, his mouth visible inside the jaguar's snout, may be a lord or priest. The spots of the jaguar pelt are the symbols for turquoise used at Monte Alban, where a jaguar deity was called 3 Turquoise. The religions and cultures of the Gulf Coast, Veracruz, and Central Mexico may have mingled in Tlaxcala. Maya-style paintings recently discovered at Cacaxtla, not far from San Rafael Tenanyecac, confirm the eclectic nature of Tlaxcalan art.


Volcanic rock


35 1/2 × 28 3/4 × 6 in. (90.2 × 73 × 15.24 cm)

Credit Line

Gift of the Olsen Foundation

Accession Number



Early Classic to Late Classic 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.



Fred H. Olsen (1891–1986), and Florence Quittenton Olsen, Guilford, Conn.; gift in 1958 to Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, Conn.
  • Handbook of the Collections, exh. cat. (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 1992), 316, ill
  • George A. Kubler, ed., Pre-Columbian Art of Mexico and Central America (New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Art Gallery, 1986), 45, 210, no. 33, fig. 21
  • Hasso Von Winning, Pre-Columbian Art of Mexico and Central America (New York: Harry N. Abrams, Inc., 1968), 188, no. 235
  • "New Acquisitions Issue," Yale University Art Gallery Bulletin 24, no. 1 (April 1958), Cover, 11, ill
Object copyright
Additional information

Object/Work type

mythology, reliefs

Technical metadata and APIs


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