Art/ Collection/ Art Object

Block Statue of Ankhwennefer

Late Period
Dynasty 25–26
ca. 690–650 B.C.
From Egypt
H. 46 × W. 19.8 × D. 35 cm, 38.8 kg (18 1/8 × 7 13/16 × 13 3/4 in., 85.6 lb.)
Credit Line:
Purchase, Lila Acheson Wallace Gift and Rogers, Fletcher, Harris Brisbane Dick, and Louis V. Bell Funds and Joseph Pulitzer Bequest, 1993
Accession Number:
On view at The Met Fifth Avenue in Gallery 127
Ankhwennefer is shown squatting on the ground. Only the head, hands and feet emerge from a cloak that he has drawn tightly around his body. Since the Middle Kingdom this statuary type, called a "block statue," served to represent non-royal persons in a general context of solar beliefs. The artist of the Ankhwennefer statue has achieved a sensitive blend of the abstract block form with organic details that are especially noticeable in the face, in the profile view of the body and in the beautifully expressive feet. The slight lift of the face is thought to be directed towards the sun.
Purchased through Peter Sharrer Ancient Art, representing ADF International, New York, 1993. An Egyptological colleague indicated the piece was with a Paris/Geneva dealer during the 1980s. Published in MMA Bulletin Fall 1994, continuously exhibited.

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