The figurine is a one-sided image of a large fish, probably, a perch. It is made on a flat ivory flake. The item has a clearly seen head, gill part, body, tail and lateral fin parts.  The fin part is a series of feathers.The body is covered with a spiral-shaped pattern typical for Mal'ta.

Manufacturing technique

In the central part of the sculpture, the spiral-shaped ornament is made with a burin and a cutting tool, on the top of it there are indentations made with the rotary movements of the burin up to 180 °. In the tail, there are similar indentations, but here the spiral ornament was not made previously. The fin zone is represented by sufficiently deep channels shaped with a burin and corrected with a cutting tool along the sides and bottom. The gill part is also made with a burin and a cutting tool. The maw is made with a cutting tool. The reverse side of the figurine is a layered surface of a ivory, not treated at all.

Use-wear traces

Polishing, smoothing and other use-wear traces were not identified.

Storage location

State Hermitage Museum

Inventory number


The Museum KAMIS



Length - 83.91 mm;

Width - 39.14 mm;

Thickness - 6.15 mm




19-23 th. years BP


Mal'ta-Buret' culture

The author of the excavations

Gerasimov M.M.


Abramova Z. A. Paleoliticheskoe iskusstvo na territorii SSSR. – M.-L.: Izd-vo AN SSSR, 1962.  – S. 49. Tabl. LIII,9.

Volkova YU. S. Iskusstvo malyh form Severnoj Azii v ehpohu verhnego paleolita. – Dissertaciya na soiskanie u. stepeni kand. ist. nauk. – Kemerovo, 2011. S. 68, 175. Ris. 13-3, 24-1.

Gerasimov M.M. Mal'ta. Paleoliticheskaya stoyanka (predvaritel'nye dannye): rezul'taty rabot 1928/29 g. – Irkutsk: Vlast' truda, 1931. S. 17-18. Tabl. 10, k.

Lbova L.V., Volkov P.V., Pankina A.I. Tekhnologicheskie aspekty proizvodstva mobil'noj plastiki v verhnem paleolite (zoomorfnaya skul'ptura Mal'ty) // V (XXI) Vserossijskij arheologicheskij s"ezd: sbornik nauchnyh trudov / otv. red. A.P. Derevyanko, A.A. Tishkin. – Barnaul : FGBOU VO «Altajskij gosudarstvennyj universitet», 2017. – S. 609.