Today we set off to tour the Museum of Pre-Columbian Art. It was quite small, but was impactful in it’s displays. Here we saw art displayed from 3,000 to 1,500 years old. The displays in this museum were from various regions of Peru dated before the Incans united the first nations of Peru. Here we saw pottery and jewelry that was both decorational and functional at the same time. We learned that Gold and Silver were used for sacred purposes and for adornment. Gold and Silver was not viewed as something valuable until the Spaniards arrived and turned it into an exploited resource used for trading and money.
This pottery below reminds me of the Etruscan Pottery we saw in Italy, black and smooth.
Here is a necklace and bracelete made of seashells. These came from the costal regions of Peru. When these were discovered by other regions, they began to make their way to places like the Andes and the plains of Peru, far from the ocean.
Here are some examples of gold used for jewelry. On the left are nose rings. On the right are earring gages that were so big, it caused the earlobes to hang to their shoulders. The Spanish Conquistadors called the Incans, “Long Ears.”
These are some wooden carved men, described as “totem” like. They reminded us of statues we saw in New Zealand.
“In pre-columbian times the representation of the feminine figure was fundamentally associated with fertility and, in this set of figurines, even an added sense of playfulness seems to be present.”
“I like their eyelashes. I think it’s neat that they thought about that detail back then.”
The people of Peru were (and still are) very connected to the earth, to nature, the seasons, and animals. Here we see many examples of vases and decorative art depicting animals as humans. Below we see owls, a deer, foxes, a pelican and llamas.
About the foxes: “In Andean mythology, the fox is considered an animal that connects the worlds. Moche art shows that it was considered a very important animal in the Moche world and mythology. These personages are sitting in the position usually assumed by the priests, and their outfits express their hierarchical position.”