A WESTERN ASIATIC COPPER ALLOY ZOOMORPHIC VESSEL STAND
A WESTERN ASIATIC COPPER ALLOY ZOOMORPHIC VESSEL STAND
A WESTERN ASIATIC COPPER ALLOY ZOOMORPHIC VESSEL STAND
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A WESTERN ASIATIC COPPER ALLOY ZOOMORPHIC VESSEL STAND
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PROPERTY FROM A NEW YORK CITY PRIVATE COLLECTION
A WESTERN ASIATIC COPPER ALLOY ZOOMORPHIC VESSEL STAND

MIDDLE BRONZE AGE, CIRCA 2300-2000 B.C.

Details
A WESTERN ASIATIC COPPER ALLOY ZOOMORPHIC VESSEL STAND
MIDDLE BRONZE AGE, CIRCA 2300-2000 B.C.
9 in. (22.8 cm.) high
Provenance
with Gallery Mikazuki, Tokyo.
Art Market, London, acquired from the above, 1984.
Antiquities, Christie's, London, 6 December 2017, lot 81.

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Hannah Fox Solomon
Hannah Fox Solomon Head of Department, Senior Specialist

Lot Essay

The vessel stand takes the form of a goat standing atop a square open frame. From the center of the goat's back rises a vertical support shaft topped by three prongs that buttress a single ring. To either side of the goat are two suckling kids. The goat’s eyes are deeply recessed for now-missing inlays of colored shell or hardstone.
Vessel stands were popular throughout northeastern Iran as well as southern Mesopotamian and appear as far east as Afghanistan. In relation to their function, G. Ortiz (no. 16 in In Pursuit of the Absolute: Art of the Ancient World from the George Ortiz Collection) notes that this type of stand belongs to a common tradition involved with temple rituals and likely held incense, a lamp or some other offering. For a related example with a bull ascribed to northwest Iran, see pp. 26-27 in T. Lawton, et al., Asian Art in the Arthur M. Sackler Gallery. For a Sumerian stand depicting an ibex with preserved inlaid shell and lapis lazuli and topped with three rings, see pp. 333-336 in O.W. Muscarella, Bronze and Iron: Ancient Near Eastern Artifacts in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. For another in the form of a bull said to be of Elamite production from northeast Kohzestan, see no. 6 in H. Mahboubian, Art of Ancient Iran.

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