Art, Nature, and Religion in the Central Andes
Themes and Variations from Prehistory to the Present
368 Pages, 6.00 x 9.00 x 1.00 in
Sales Date: May 1, 2012
From prehistory to the present, the Indigenous peoples of the Andes have used a visual symbol system—that is, art—to express their sense of the sacred and its immanence in the natural world. Many visual motifs that originated prior to the Incas still appear in Andean art today, despite the onslaught of cultural disruption that native Andeans have endured over several centuries. Indeed, art has always been a unifying power through which Andeans maintain their spirituality, pride, and culture while resisting the oppression of the dominant society.
In this book, Mary Strong takes a significantly new approach to Andean art that links prehistoric to contemporary forms through an ethnographic understanding of Indigenous Andean culture. In the first part of the book, she provides a broad historical survey of Andean art that explores how Andean religious concepts have been expressed in art and how artists have responded to cultural encounters and impositions, ranging from invasion and conquest to international labor migration and the internet. In the second part, Strong looks at eight contemporary art types—the scissors dance (danza de tijeras), home altars (retablos), carved gourds (mates), ceramics (ceramica), painted boards (tablas), weavings (textiles), tinware (hojalateria), and Huamanga stone carvings (piedra de Huamanga). She includes prehistoric and historic information about each art form, its religious meaning, the natural environment and sociopolitical processes that help to shape its expression, and how it is constructed or performed by today’s artists, many of whom are quoted in the book.
- Part I. Themes
- Chapter 1. Pre-Columbian Andeans
- Chapter 2. Andean Thinking
- Part II. Variations
- Chapter 3. The Spanish Colonial Period
- Chapter 4. Globalization Today
- Part III. Andean Arts Today
- Chapter 5. The Scissors Dance (Danza de las Tijeras)
- Chapter 6. Home Altars (Retablos)
- Chapter 7. Carved Gourds (Mates)
- Chapter 8. Ceramics (Cerámica)
- Chapter 9. Painted Boards (Tablas de Sarhua)
- Chapter 10. Weavings (Textiles)
- Chapter 11. Tinware (Hojalatería) and Huamanga Stone Carving (Piedra de Huamanga)
The publication of Art, Nature, and Religion in the Central Andes was made possible by the support of the Joe R. and Teresa Lozano Long Endowment in Latin American and Latino Art and Culture.