Statuette of a Girl
Egyptian, Classical, Ancient Near Eastern Art
On View: Egyptian Orientation Gallery, 3rd Floor
To ancient Egyptians, this miniature representation of a nude young girl would have had erotic appeal in ways that may elude us now. Her heavy wig alludes to the Egyptian practice of wearing an elaborate coiffure during sex. Although this figure’s original function is not clear, the loop on the top of the head implies that it was suspended from a cord.
ca. 1390-1353 B.C.E.
Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund
Small painted ivory statuette of a nude standing girl, wearing elaborately braided wig; suspension loop on the top of wig. Left arm held under breasts. Hair painted black; minute traces of red pigment on body.
Condition: Practically perfect. Necklace missing. Two minute holes just above pelvis suggest figure may have worn a belt or girdle.
Statuette of a Girl, ca. 1390-1353 B.C.E. Ivory, pigment, 3 1/4 x 5/8 in. (8.3 x 1.6 cm). Brooklyn Museum, Charles Edwin Wilbour Fund, 40.126.2. Creative Commons-BY (Photo: Brooklyn Museum, 40.126.2_SL1.jpg)
overall, 40.126.2_SL1.jpg. Brooklyn Museum photograph
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What was the purpose of this statue?
This Statuette of Nude Girl may have had an erotic appeal in Ancient Egypt. This is assumption is based on her youth, nudity, and elaborate wig together. The loop on top of her heard indicates that it was suspended in some way.
The 18th Dynasty, the time period when this figurine was made, saw a proliferation of artwork on all scales. Many new temples and tombs were built plus many more personal adornments and possessions are known as well.