The J. Paul Getty Museum

Female Figure of the Kilia Type

Object Details


Female Figure of the Kilia Type




Near Eastern (Anatolian)


Anatolia (present-day Turkey) (Place Created)


4500–3500 B.C.



Object Number:



14.3 × 5.4 × 3.6 cm (5 5/8 × 2 1/8 × 1 7/16 in.)

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Object Description

Female figures were made throughout the Aegean basin during the prehistoric period, including in the region of ancient Anatolia (present-day Turkey). This figure represents a highly stylized standing nude female. Her bulbous head, long neck, and flat body are characteristic of the Kilia type of female figurines, named after the village in northwest Turkey where the first examples were found. Carved from translucent white marble, these figures typically have carefully detailed eyes, noses, and ears. Although the ears and nose of this statuette are defined by carving, the eyes originally would have been enhanced with paint. An incised triangle emphasizing the pubic area confirms the statuette’s identity as female. Additional incisions on the front of the figure outline the tops of the thighs, while a horizontal line accents the hips across the back. Although the Kilia type statuettes of women are considerably earlier in date than related figures produced in the Cyclades, they are probably also linked with fertility and the life cycle, a central spiritual concern in the ancient Mediterranean.

- 1988

Atlantis Antiquities, Ltd. (New York, New York), sold to the J. Paul Getty Museum, 1988.

Prehistoric Arts of the Eastern Mediterranean (February 11 to May 4, 2003)
  • The J. Paul Getty Museum at the Getty Center (Los Angeles), February 11 to May 4, 2003

"Acquisitions/1988." The J. Paul Getty Museum Journal 17 (1989), p. 107, no. 3.

"U.S. Museum Acquisitions." Minerva 1, 6 (1990), pp. 43-47, p. 43, fig. 1.

Birge, D. "Field Notes." Archeological News 17, nos. 1-4 (1992), p. 41.

Seeher, J. "Die kleinasiatischen Marmorstatuetten vom Typ Kiliya," Archaeologischer Anzeiger, 1992, 2, pp. 153-170, p. 162, no. 32 (without inv. no.).

The J. Paul Getty Museum Calendar (Winter 1991/1992), under "Bronze Age Sculpture", ill.

Getz-Preziosi, Pat. Early Cycladic Sculpture. Rev. ed. (Malibu: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1994), figs. 83-84.

Towne Markus, Elana. Masterpieces of the J. Paul Getty Museum: Antiquities. (Los Angeles: J. Paul Getty Museum, 1997), p. 13.

Takaoglu, Turan. A Chalcolithic Marble Workshop at Kulaksizlar in Western Anatolia: An analysis of production and craft specialization (BAR International Series 1358) (Oxford: Archaeopress, 2005), p. 65, no. 246.