Mayan ,Aztec , and Mexican Art Jasmine Reis Oraida Tapia Megan Houle Holly Zelano Geography of Mesoamerica oMesoamerica names the region that compromises part of present day Mexico, Guatemala, Belize, Honduras, and the pacific coast of El Salvador. oThe only difference between present day Mesoamerica and past Mesoamerica, is that during early Mesoamerica there was more archaeological sites . Geographic Highlights of Mesoamerican and Mexico Some Geographical features of Mesoamerica and Mexico volcanic and seismic regions, dense tropical rainforests, mountains that reach to snow level and land fertile for crops of maize or corn. Also there is a large source of limestone used both for carving and building. Aztec Life • The Aztec empire was Tenochtitlan and that was where they had there • Temples had or were decorated with powerful temples and pyramids. gods. •They had tombs called way the dead. The city spread into 4 major quadrants, defined by two avenues that lead to the center streets and alley ways defined the quadrants into smaller squares, each separated apartment compounds with entrances and patios arranged to give household privacy. •People from far away, merchants, potters, and stone workers lived there. •Arid land spread to the east and south west producing food for all people. •The city elite who administered matters of state had elegant palaces where rooms bright with murals opened onto summer patios. Aztec Daily Life Aztec and Mayan Main Religion • One of the many main points for • Mayan god of rain (chac). One of the religious rituals was sacred buildings sacrifices of this god was to drown and temples dedicated to the gods. children in wells. • The Aztecs worship sacred places. • In some Mayan regions the god of • Aztec religions were concerned with rain was so important that the the sun. the Aztecs believed that one facades of buildings were covered in day the world would end violently masks of chac the rain god. and to delay that they preformed human sacrifice. They believed it was there duty to feed the gods with human blood thereby keeping the sun alive. • God of spring time (xipe totec) it means our flayed lord. Aztec god patronized the metal workers and victim sacrifice in honor of the god of spring time were skinned alive. After doing so priest would wear the victims skin, this symbolized the annual spring renewal of vegetation. Chac the Rain God Sacrifices • Sacrifice was a religious ritual • Most common Aztec sacrifice was to preformed by both the Aztecs and stretch the victim over a sacrificial the Mayans. stone, five priests took part in the • Aztecs sacrificed more frequently ceremony four of them held the and more widespread than the limbs and one cut out the heart all Mayans. while the victim was still alive. • The Mayans sometimes sacrificed • Another common Aztec form of scarf victims in wells. ice was to flay or to skin the man • Victims consisted of men women alive. children and animals. • Aztecs practiced cannibalism in some • Mayans sometimes drowned there religious ceremonies under strict victims while the Aztecs removed the regulations enemy captives were victims hearts. ritually eaten but only the legs and arms. • Most sacrifices were preformed in honor of the sun moon rain and earth gods. • People believed that just as the gods scarified themselves during the creation of the sun and moon they had to do the same. Life After Death • • Mayan burial – The Mayans usually Aztec rituals of death was to take the limbs of a sacrificial victims and then buried there dead under house floors eat them by the victims captor it is or in the ground, or sometimes they done in the presence of a mummified cremated the remains buried them in body. caves in underground tanks or urns. • It was the way that the Aztecs died • The upper classes were buried in very rather than how they lived that elaborate tombs. would determined what would happen to them in the afterlife. • If the person died a normal death his or her sole was to pass through the nine levels of hell before reaching Mictlan or the realm of the death god. • Warriors who died in battle and women who died in child birth joined the sun god in the sky immediately Ancient burial urn Art Influences Mayan, Aztec art were influenced by their códices gods and by other mesoamericana habitants. Also they were influenced by europeans, spainards that came searching for valuable instead they found architecture and pottery. They influenced each other, renovating their way of living and artisanry. Frida Kahlo •Artists that inspired her work were Durer, Rembrandt ,and Van Gogh. •Her self-portraiture became a career in itself, a vast amount of her pieces are self images. You can observe a variety of moods and values: a love of life, naïve innocence, sophistication, political activism, and fantasy. •Monkeys have along history in European art, it was often called “The Ape of Nature.”The combinations of monkeys and humans in exotic settings were found in the paintings of Douanier Heneri Rousseau, a French artist that influenced Kahlo. • Monkeys were surrogate children, altar egos, and fantasy companions. In this portrait however the monkey represents Diego Rivera which at the point was divorced with Frida . Like the veins connecting the two Fridas , the blood red ribbons falling from her hair that wrap around both her and the monkey are Self-Portrait with Monkey, 1940 uniting them .The monkeys paw coming out of Frida Kahlo (1907-1954) her hair represents Diego strangling her or Oil on Canvas. 21x16 ¾ in. Diego slitting her neck .Frida felt suicidal. Found out of a private collection Later the same year they got back together. Diego Rivera • Rivera was amazed with the Tehuantepec during his visit in 1922. This piece was painted a year before Rivera married Kahlo, later on she adopted the Tehuana fashions as her own way of dressing. • One of the two monumental works Rivera made in 1928 depicting the Zandunga (the other a fresco in the court of Festivals at the Secretariat of public Education in Mexico City,) his work shows he had complete assimilation of indigenismo or the usage of indigenous motifs to energize modern paintings of Mexican art. Rivera captured the luminosity of the fresco, which is augmented by the paintings large size. • The solid, monumental forms within the composition, that includes the cubist foliage and banana plants forming a canopy over the dancers heads, by giving the image both an organic character. Echoing a serene folk classicism of the dancers and their costumes, the entirety of the painting is classical in design values which originate in Greco-Roman antiquity and sense. Scene is archetypical, defining a class of cultural experience. Dance at Tehuantepec 1928, Diego Rivera (1887-1957) oil on canvas. 78x 63 ¾ in. Juan O’ Gorman • Juan O’ Gorman was born in Coyoacan in 1905, the son of an Irish immigrant engineer and portraitist and his Mexican born wife, herself also of Irish decent. • Its about Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, he was called the father of Mexican independence. He fought for the independence of liberals who didn’t want to be ruled under the Spanish. • On September 16, 1810 a plot among Hidalgo and other liberals was discovered so they were forced to start a revolution. Which Hidalgo called Grito De Dolores( Cry of Pain.) Became the first of several declarations from Spain. • Hidalgo was unable to control the revolutionary movement, and his radical polices on returning land to native Padre Hidalgo from the Retablo de la Mexicans and other economic changes Independencia (Altar of Independence) 1959- lead to their union with Spain. He was 1961) Juan O’ Gorman (1905-1982) Mural, later caught, stripped of his priestly fresco and tempera Chapultepec Castle, Mexico City. powers and, executed in 1811. •He was hired to make copies of pre Saturnino Herran Hispanic art at Teotihuacan for the archeological survey in 1907.Giving him the interest to do ancient murals. •Our gods project began in 1914 with a competition at the academy for mural to be entered at the national theater. •Herran decided to paint a large mural of pre Hispanic Indians doing sacrifice to the gods, it was an Aztec statue of Coatlicue with a crucified Christ. •Our Gods displayed Herran’s virtues: a facile, command of human anatomy, fluid handling of paint, a fascinating handling of light, vivid presentation of human Our Gods 1914-1918 interaction, and a surprisingly abstract Saturnino Herran (1887-19180 overall that places him in the ranks of Oil on canvas 5ft 9in.x17ft 5in. proto modernists. Found out of a private collection •Our gods project provides a bridge from the Romanized pre Hispanic subjects of the 19th century academics to the muralist movement in the next decade. If Herran was alive he would make great contributions to muralism and Mexican art in general. David Alfaro Siqueiros Echo of a Scream has a similar meaning like Picasso’s Guernica, a high level of propaganda against facist aggression , it also achieves a universal affect : condemnation of war in general. We see that Siqueiros created this piece the same year Picasso created his in 1937, shared strong feelings about war. Eventhough their expositions are competely different, in both show death, desperation, anguish. It chooses to communicate in a symbolic, dream like terms. Abandoned child is sitting screaming on top of war instruments, in a landscape filled of desperation and tribulation. Either the child has lost its parents in the war, or has been taken against will by rhe enemy. The child’s image is doubled to be seen as an Echo of a Scream 1937 “echo”,giving a scene of isolation. The red David Alfaro Siqueiros cloth that serves as clothing for the child Enamel on Wood 48x36in. represents the blood shed, in war affecting Museum of Modern Art NY children by leaving some orphans. Ekchuah Ek Chuah is the Mayan God of cocoa, merchants and travellers, and appears in the Dresden Codex. Ek Chuah (ek means "star" and chuah means "black" in Yucatec Maya), who was also the god of cacao. The connection lies in the fact that cacao seeds were used as currency throughout Meso- America. Ek Chuah was the patron of cacao, and the owners of plantations of this crop conducted a ceremony in his honor in the month of Muán. The travelers or merchants they carried incense trough out their journey. When they reached a mountain top at night getting three stones with several grains of incense accompanied by three flat stones, in front of the first three. Praying to Ek chuah to give them good fortune and bring them back safely to their homes. Modern life in Mexico • Spaniards came to Mexico in the • More than 5 million Mexican Indians 1500’s and conquered the Indians will primarily us Indian language in that had lived there for centuries (the daily life which includes the Mayan Incas the Aztecs and the Mayans) Mixtecs the Otumi the Irescan and • The majority of people in Mexico are the Zapatec. ancestors to the ancient Indians that • Daily life in Mexico includes many old once ruled over Mexico. customs from there Indian past and • Maya and Zaputec are the major Spanish colonial period. Indian languages spoken in Mexico. • Many households consist on an • 75% of all Mexicans now live in cities average of 5 to 6 people. or towns. • Women now have jobs outside of the • Mexico changed quite rapidly, Mexico home an women living on farms will now has 10 million population. work on the fields as will the boys. • Cities are so largely populated life in Whereas the city boys will have part many ways mirrors life in the U.S. time jobs while in school. • Families live in rows of homes built in Spanish colonial style and suburban live in apartment buildings and houses.