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Image map of statue no. 2

Statue no. 2

`Ain Ghazal, Jordan, around 6500 B.C.
Plaster and bitumen, Height 104 cm

Click anywhere on the statue above to see high-resolution details
(details are approximately life size, 500 x 500 pixels, 60k - 80k, jpg)

 Exhibition Label text

Photograph of statue no. 1

 (40k jpg)

Statue no. I
`Ain Ghazal, Jordan, around 6500 B.C.
Plaster and bitumen
Height 100 cm

The heads of the statues and busts are curiously shaped. The top of the head is recessed from the face, and the surface of this area of the head is rougher than the faces. These features suggest that the heads were originally covered with a wig or cloth headdress. Impressions of a woven material are preserved on the back side of two of the heads (statue nos. 1 and 2), but such impressions could have been made accidentally while the plaster was still damp.

Photograph of statue no. 2

 (40k jpg)

Statue no. 2
`Ain Ghazal, Jordan, around 6500 B.C.
Plaster and bitumen
Height 104 cm

Deformed during burial over thousands of years, many pieces of the statues no longer fitted neatly together. Originally the feet of this statue were placed side by side, like those of statue no. I.

Photograph of statue no. 3

 (40k jpg)

Two-headed bust no. 3
'Ain Ghazal, Jordan, around 6500 B.C.
Plaster and bitumen
Height 47 cm

This unusual two-headed bust is one of three recovered from the site of 'Ain Ghazal. It may represent a twin-headed god or goddess, but it could also be interpreted as a human couple, or twins, perhaps worshiped as revered ancestors.
 The protruding portion of the figure's right side shows the original width of the bust. Distorted during burial, some pieces no longer fitted neatly together.

Photograph of statue no. 4/8

 (40k jpg)

Two-headed bust no. 4/8
(one head mostly restored)
 `Ain Ghazal, Jordan, around 6500 B.C.
Plaster and bitumen
Height 83 cm

This bust originally had two heads, but only a portion of the bust's right head survived. The other two examples of two-headed busts show that the heads are almost identical.
 A conservator restored the head using acrylic putty shaped on an epoxy form and colored it to resemble plaster and bitumen. This new head is secured by a stainless steel screw and can be easily detached.

Photograph of statue no. 5/6

 (40k jpg)

Two-headed bust no. 5/6
`Ain Ghazal, Jordan, around 6500 B.C.
Plaster and bitumen
Height 88 cm
 

This bust must have been broken at the time it was placed in the pit, because the fragments belonging to it were found both above and below the other statues. Study of the bust's manufacture suggests that the heads might have been made by one person, the torso by someone else.

Photograph of plaster faces

 (32k jpg)

Three plaster faces
`Ain Ghazal, Jordan, around 7000 B.C.
Plaster, red pigmented plaster, and bitumen
Height 12 - 16 cm

These three faces, found buried face down in a small pit at the site of `Ain Ghazal, were reassembled from many fragments. They were originally made by modeling plaster over human skulls, in some places directly on the bone and in others over grasslike material used to stuff hollows and cavities in the skull. A thin, finishing layer of plaster, colored pink with iron oxide pigment, was applied to the modeled surfaces and smoothed over. Horizontal slits indicating eyes were filled with a black paste containing bitumen, a natural asphalt. Curiously, no bone was found in the pit, and it appears that the plaster had been intentionally removed from the skulls and carefully buried.

 Detail of statue no. 5/6, approximately life size (80k jpg)

Detail of statue no. 2 (80k jpg)

Detail of statue no.2 (88k jpg)

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 Last updated: July 28, 1996


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