The ancient cultures of Central and South America produced extraordinary works of ceramic sculpture that depict both ritual practices and aspects of daily life. Objects in the collection include human figures depicted in their finery, animals fashioned into containers and whistles, stone markers used in ceremonial ball games, jewelry made of jade and gold, and elaborately painted vessels.

The UI Stanley Museum of Art's collection is focused on the ceramic sculpture of ancient West Mexico, which is famed for its rich stylistic variety. The collection also contains objects from other ancient Mexican cultures, including brightly painted Mayan ceramics, stone figures from Guerrero, and delicately worked figures from Teotiuacan and Tlatilco. Other regions are represented as well, including the great textile traditions of ancient Peru and the jade and gold jewelry of Colombia.

Selections from the Stanley's collection of Ancient and Native American art are now on view at the Stanley Visual Classroom, located in the Iowa Memorial Union's third-floor Richey Ballroom.

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