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Wall statues

This category includes figural sculptures bearing unequivocal witness to their being originally set against a wall. Technically speaking, they were sculptures in high/very high relief, quite often with parts (arms, feet) in full round.

In the Early Period, small sculptures were modelled (or moulded) with highly purified clay mixed with very finely triturated straw. Large-sized sculptures were modelled around an armature made of a sheaf of stray or reeds held by a strand of ropes; the figures were then shaped with a thick layer of coarse clay and completed with a coat of purified clay. Similar techniques were also used during the Late Period, although with solutions adapted to new challenges such as the gigantic size of the main cultic images. The core was made of common clay mixed with straw, and wooden sticks were used to fix the images to the walls or heads and limbs to the trunks; the finishing layer was of a distinctive red colour. The sculptures were all vivified by a bright polychromy and, particularly in the Early Period 2 and in the Late Period, they were often gilded.




Archives of the Italian Archaeological Mission in Afghanistan

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