« Candy Time Machine | Home | Solar-Powered Fan Hat »

May 20, 2018

Gold Earflares with Multifigure Scenes — Chimú (Peru)

Hb_1991.419.67 .68

From the Metropolitan Museum of Art :


At the time these earflares were made — A.D. 1350-1470 — precious metals were so plentiful on Peru's northern coast that personal ornaments worn by the elite had become large and ostentatious.

Flares like the present example were worn by prominent Chimú men in big holes in their distended earlobes, the thick shafts in back — which are hollow — counterbalancing the weight of the frontals.

The ornaments, surprisingly lightweight considering their size (5.25" in diameter), are worked on the front with complex multifigured scenes.

The central image is of a distinguished Chimú lord wearing an enormous fanned-out headdress and large circular earflares.

Holding a beaker and a fan, he stands on a litter borne on the shoulders of two attendants.

They too are men of rank since they also wear ear ornaments and headdresses.

The cut-out and repoussé designs of the flared headdresses echo the rhythm of the small spheres encircling the rims of the frontals.

The shafts are embellished with a delicate chased repeat of crested birds in a diamond grid.


Currently on display in the show "Golden Kingdoms: Luxury and Legacy in the Ancient Americas," at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City through May 28, 2018.

[via the New York Times]

May 20, 2018 at 12:01 PM | Permalink


The comments to this entry are closed.