Mary (from a nativity), Wood, polychromed and gilded; ivory touched up with polychromy (face and shoulders), Philippine and/or Ecuadoran

Mary (from a nativity)

Date:
18th century (?) possibly later
Geography:
Possibly made in Ecuador; Possibly made in Philippines
Culture:
Philippine and/or Ecuadoran
Medium:
Wood, polychromed and gilded; ivory touched up with polychromy (face and shoulders)
Dimensions:
H. 7 3/4 in. (19.7 cm.)
Classification:
Sculpture
Credit Line:
Gift of Loretta Hines Howard, 1964
Accession Number:
64.164.172
Not on view
The ivory heads of Mary and Joseph were among the numerous such parts imported to America via the Manila Galleon trade. The style of the figures' polychromy, however, reveals that they were set into their wooden bodies in Ecuador. Artists there practiced a distinctive technique to embellish the garments of their sculptures, applying gold patterns over the colored backgrounds rather than scratching them through, as in true estofado.