Museo Chileno de Arte Precolombino

Dance of the shaman

This snuff-tray displays a shaman looking upward with knees slightly bent, holding a trophy-head in each hand. He is in trance, dancing under the effect of a hallucinogenic substance. The fangs represent his transformation into a large feline, an animal often associated with the consumption of these substances. His elongated nose emphasizes the mode of consumption, while the saliva or vomit emerging from his mouth is a common result of this kind of ritual intoxication.

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‘Shaman’ wooden snuff tray. San Pedro. MCHAP, 3690.

Dance of the shaman, draw.