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Lesson: Mayan and Toltec Sculpture

Maya and Toltec Sculpture

This lesson explores the simplified geometric sculptures of the Maya and Toltec from Mexico.  By studying their sculpture, you are introduced to an entirely different perspective on life, far removed from our modern world.  The  assignment for this project asks you to combine this  style with a subject that interests you.

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practice

This lesson will show you how to use basic carving tools and to create solid geometric shapes.  Practice making designs and relief patterns with clay before beginning work on your final sculpture.

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Sketches

When it comes to sketching sculptures, it is useful to think of them in terms of three dimensionality.  As you can see, this student artist has drawn the front and back of his sculpture.

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This sculpture is almost done!  She captures the abstract symmetrical geometric design, common to Maya and Toltec sculpture.

Artwork

What will your sculpture be about?  The sculpture above is demonstrating "flexibility."  The sketch on the left focus on elements in the sky illustrating the sun, moon, and clouds.  Perhaps you might be interested in a different sphere like the earth or animals?