04 August 2013

Small translucent human head pebble figure from Oregon shares iconography with larger Missouri and The Netherlands examples

Dennis Boggs find, Irrigon, Oregon

This is a worked representation of a human head profile looking left with an elongated face and nose. There is no apparent tool use for this object and the attention to detail in the micro-sculpting of this pebble, its likeness to an anthropomorphic image and its likeness to other suspected sculptures suggests the work was done to realize the image. Mr. Boggs has collected suspected tools and art objects from along the Columbia River at Irrigon, Oregon for almost 50 years and generously gifted his finds to this blog so they could shared with a wide audience. (enter BOGGS in the blog search box at right for a list of other postings related to this collection)

From Jan van Es, The Netherlands, a long-faced human head rock which shares iconographic similarity with the Oregon sculpted pebble

The Oregon pebble face is translucent and has red inclusions in the amber orange color 

The pebble has been split to open up a side for the sculpture. (LEFT) The cortex on the left side and the worked surface on the right side. (RIGHT) the raw stone surface or cortex

Cortex view with CM scale (approx. 4cm long)

Dennis Boggs' Oregon pebble artifact on left, Keith Stamper Missouri artifact with similar iconography on right was found in context of Levallois technique tools. Jan van Es said he recognizes the Keith Stamper stone as strikingly similar to typical early Neanderthaler art he has studied dated 300,000 to 150,000 years before present.

Here is a markup on the Oregon artifact illustrating the interpreted facial features, white eye, black base of nose and red mouth. The eye is small bit of flint in bas relief which was retained in the "correct" position by the skilled rock artist here. (Click photos to expand. Toggle with your mouse from last to first photos in the series to see the illustration of the intentional flint work to execute the anthropomorphic facial image.)

-kbj

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