This terracotta figure of a caballito (little horse) comes from the village of Pucará in Peru. A local folk art that honors the Incan culture, which created stone figures of domestic animals as part of their religion, these hand made pottery pieces are more commonly in the form of bulls. The stirrup-shaped handle and the opening on the horse's back indicate that figures like these were originally pitchers, used to serve chicha, a beverage made from fruits, vegetables or grain. The horse's open mouth served as a spout for the liquid.
The red clay was painted white and then decorated with geometric designs and striping in shades of salmon and a dark green, with a black mane and tail. It has carved, protruding eyes and nostrils and the mane is carved with a series of notches down its length. All the paint has a matte finish and is probably not waterproof, so this figure is for decorative purposes only. Measuring 11 inches long, 9 inches tall and about 4 inches wide across the chest, it weighs a sturdy 1 pound 9 ounces. The figure stands firmly on flat surfaces and is in very good condition, with wear to the paint but no chips, cracks or missing parts. It's a wonderful decorative find to add a touch of the Andes to your home.