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The all-pervading influence of Olmec culture, often referred to as Mesoamerica's mother culture, is evident in the treatment of the face modeled on this remarkable early Zapotec vessel. The eyes and particularly the down-turned mouth are purely Olmec in style.

Effigy brazier
Late Pre-Classic (400 B.C. - 100 A.D.)
Monte Albán, State of Oaxaca
Light clay
19 x 12 cm.
National Museum of Anthropology, Mexico.

Photo © Jorge Pérez de Lara