Art of the Americas after 1300 By Nisha George,Devon Rush, Taylor Martin, and Abby McCarty
<ul><li>Humans first arrived in the Americas about 30,000 years ago. </li></ul><ul><li>Civilizations with some similar characteristics rose across North and South America. (The Olmec, Maya, Aztec, Inca) </li></ul><ul><li>Art was central to the indigenous people’s lives. Most art pieces had ritual uses. </li></ul>Foundations
The Aztec Empire <ul><li>The Mexica people were the rulers of the land. (previously nomads) </li></ul><ul><li>They rose to prominence during the 15th century through a series of alliances and royal marriages and began an aggressive expansion that brought them tribute to transform the city. </li></ul><ul><li>They were divided into 3 classes: elite rulers, merchants/artisans, and farmers/laborers. </li></ul><ul><li>Their religion depended on human actions like bloodletting and human sacrifice rituals. </li></ul><ul><li>Hernan Cortes found Tenochtitlan in 1519, in awe of the architecture in the middle of the Lake. </li></ul>
A View of the World, pg. From Codex Fejervary-Mayer, 1400-1519 <ul><li>shows preconquest view of the people </li></ul><ul><li>the fire god, Xiuhtecutli </li></ul><ul><li>4 directions with color, bird, and god. </li></ul><ul><li>Blood flows from Tezcatlipoca’s attributes </li></ul><ul><li>The symbolic circles </li></ul>
The Founding of Tenochtitlan page from Codex Mendoza <ul><li>Idealized representation of the city and its sacred precinct </li></ul><ul><li>symbol of the city </li></ul><ul><li>Waterways divide the city into four parts </li></ul><ul><li>Aztec Conquests </li></ul><ul><li>Skull rack </li></ul><ul><li>Great Pyramid dedicated to Huitzilopochtli and Tlaloc </li></ul><ul><li>sun rose on different sides of the temple, uniting fire and water </li></ul><ul><li>During the equinoxes, the sun illuminated the Temple of Quetzalcoatl </li></ul>
The Moon Goddess Coyolxauhqui (“She of the Golden Bells”) from the Sacred Precinct (Templo Mayor) 1469? Mexico City <ul><li>Relief at the foot of the Great Pyramid </li></ul><ul><li>Rope with a skull around to her waist </li></ul><ul><li>Bells on her cheeks and balls of down in her hair </li></ul><ul><li>Magnificent headdress </li></ul><ul><li>Distinctive ear ornaments </li></ul>
Rock-cut sanctuary, Malinalco Mexico, 15th century, modern thatched roof <ul><li>Pointed </li></ul><ul><li>carved into the side of a mounted </li></ul><ul><li>formidable entrance </li></ul><ul><li>symbolic cave into the mountain; the womb of the earth </li></ul><ul><li>pit for blood sacrifices in the heart of the mountain </li></ul><ul><li>circular room inside </li></ul><ul><li>Semicircular bench also inside, carved with a stylized eagle and jaguar skins </li></ul>
The Mother Goddess, Coatlicue 1487-1520 Basalt, 8’6” <ul><li>Found near the ruins of Tenochtitlan’s sacred precinct </li></ul><ul><li>A conquistador descrived seeing this statue covered with blood inside the Temple of Huitzilopochtl </li></ul><ul><li>Skirt of twisted snakes that also form her body </li></ul><ul><li>Necklace of sacrificial offerings </li></ul><ul><li>broad shouldered figure with clawed hands and feet </li></ul><ul><li>the sculpture’s simple, bold and blocky forms create a single visual whole </li></ul><ul><li>it would have been painted originally </li></ul>
The Inca Empire : · One of the largest states in the world at the beginning of the 16th century · Stretched across modern day Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia, and Chile · It was called the Land of Four Quarters · Inca Empire began to rapidly expand in the 15th century through conquest, alliance, and intimidation. · Had a hierarchical bureaucracy and various forms of labor taxation · Agriculture was divided into 3 cateragories: those for the god, the ruler and state, and the local population. · To move their armies and speed up transport and communication, 23,000 miles of roads were built. · The Inca kept detailed accounts on knotted and colored cords.
Inca Masonry : · Using heavy stone hammers, Incan builders created durable stone structures. · Commoners’ houses and some walls were made of irregular stones that were carefully put together. · Certain domestic and religious structures were erected using squared off, smooth surfaced stones laid in even rows. · The blocks might have been beveled, cut at an angle, or smoothed into a continuous flowing surface. · Inca structures had gabled, thatched roofs. · Doors, windows, and niches were trapezoid shaped.
Walls of the Temple of the Sun: · made of rectangular blocks · bocks are smoothed into a continuous flowing surface
Machu Picchu, Peru: · One of the most spectacular archaeological sites in the world. · The stone buildings located there today, occupy terraces around central plazas, and narrow agricultural terraces descend into the valley. · Its temples and carved sacred stones suggest that it had an important religious function.
Incan Textiles: · The production of fine textiles is of ancient origin in the Andes. · Textiles were one of the primary forms of wealth. · One kind of labor taxation was the required manufacture of fibers and cloth. · Cloth was deemed a fitting offering for the gods.
Tunic: (23-8) · Each square in the tunic shown represents a miniature tunic, but the meaning of the individual patterns is not yet completely understood. · The 4-part motifs may refer to the land of the Four Quarters. · The checker board pattern designated military officers and royal escorts.
The Fall of the Inca Empire: · The Spanish, who conquered the Inca in 1532, were far more interested in the Inca’s vast quantities of gold and silver than in cloth. · They melted down whatever gold and silver objects they found. · The Inca valued gold and silver because they saw in them symbols of the sun and moon.
Llama: (23-9) · This object escaped the conquerors’ treasure hunt. · This was buried as an offering. · Found near Lake Titicaca · Thought to have a special connection with the sun, rain, and fertility · Dressed in a red tunic and gold jewelry, this llama passed through the streets during April celebrations.
Eastern Woodlands: · When the original settlers of this area were gone, new groups began moving into the Eastern Woodlands. · These people supported themselves by a combination of hunting and agriculture. · They lived in villages and cultivated corn, squash, and beans. · When the Europeans arrived, the Eastern Woodlands people traded with the European settlers. They exchanged furs for metal kettles, needles, cloth, and beads. · Woodland people made wampum, belts and strings of cylindrical purple and white shell beads. Wampum was used to keep records and exchanged to conclude treaties.
Woodland Art: · Woodland art focused on personal adornment- tattoos, body paints, and elaborate dress and quillwork- the quills of porcupine and bird feathers are dyed and attached to materials in patterns. · Quill work and basketry were a woman’s art form. · Basketry is the weaving of reeds, grasses, and other materials to form containers. The three major techniques are: coiling, twining, and plaiting. · Beadwork became popular when the woodland artists began to acquire European colored glass. · Beadwork became incorporated into reintegration.
Baby Carrier: (23-10) · Richly decorated with symbols of protection and well-being, including bands of antelopes in profiles and thunderbirds with their heads turned and tails outspread.
Shoulder Bag: (23-11) · Exemplifies the evolution of beadwork design · In contrast to the rectilinear patterns of quillwork, this Delaware bag is covered with curvilinear plant motifs · White line outline brilliant pink and blue shaped forms
Great Plains · Over time, the woodland people were pushed westward by Europeans. They settled again in the Great Plains. · They developed a nomadic lifestyle. · A distinctive plains culture flourished from about 1700 to 1870. · A light portable building called a tepee was created. · By 1885, the plains people were outnumbered and out gunned by Euro-Americans.
Blackfoot Women raising a Tepee: (25-12) · Frame work of a teepee consisted of a stable frame of three or four long poles, in a roughly egg-shaped plan. · The framework was covered with waterproof animal hides. · Tepees were the property and responsibility of women. · Men recorded their exploits in symbolic and narrative form in paintings on tepee linings.
The Northwest Coast the Pacific coast of North America is a region of unusually abundant resources peoples of the Northwest Coast – the Tlingit, the Haida, and the Kwakwaka'wakw (or Kwakiutl) social rank within and between related families was based on genealogical closeness to the mythic ancestor a family derived its name and the right to use certain animals and spirits as totemic emblems, or crests, from its mythic ancestor these emblems appeared prominently in Northwest Coast art, notably in carved house crests and the tall, freestanding poles erected to memorialize dead chiefs
23-14 Grizzly bear house-partition screen , from the house of Chief Shakes of Wrangell, Canada, c. 1840. Cedar, native paint, and human hair, 15 x 8' – Denver Art Museum the image of a rearing grizzly bear painted on the screen is itself made up of smaller bears and bear heads that appear in its ears, eyes, nostrils, joints, paws, and body the images within the image enrich the monumental symmetrical design the oval door opening is a symbolic vagina; passing through it reenacts the birth of the family from its ancestral spirit
23-15 Chilkat Blanket . Tlingit, before 1928. Mountain-goat wool and shredded cedar bark, 55 1/8” x 63 3/4” - American Museum of Natural History, New York the weavers did not use looms; instead, they hung warp threads from a rod and twisted colored threads back and forth through them to make the pattern The ends of the warp formed the fringe at the bottom of the blanket the small face in the center of the blanket shown here represents the body of a stylized creature, perhaps a sea bear (a fur seal) or a standing eagle on top of the body are the creature's large eyes; below it and to the sides are its legs and claws characteristic of Northwest painting and weaving, the images are composed of two basic elements: the ovoid, a slightly bent rectangle with rounded corners, and the formline, a continuous, shape-defining line here, subtly swelling black formlines define shapes with gentle curves, ovoids, and rectangular C shapes when the blanket was worn, its two-dimensional forms would have become three-dimensional, with the dramatic central figure curving over the wearer's back and the intricate side panels crossing over his shoulders and chest - Chilkat men created the patterns, which they drew on boards, and women did the weaving the blankets are made from shredded cedar bark wrapped with mountain-goat wool
23-16 Edward S. Curtis. Hamatsa dancers, Kwakwaka'wakw, Canada Many Native American cultures stage ritual dance ceremonies to call upon guardian spirits the participants in Northwest Coast dance ceremonies wore elaborate costumes and striking carved wooden masks among the most elaborate masks were those used by the Kwakwaka'wakw in their Winter Ceremony for initiating members into the shamanistic Hamatsa society the dance reenacted the taming of Hamatsa, a people-eating spirit, and his three attendant bird spirits magnificent carved and painted masks transformed the dancers into Hamatsa and the bird attendants, who searched for victims to eat strings allowed the dancers to manipulate the masks so that the beaks opened and snapped shut with spectacular effect
Attributed to Willie Seaweed. Kwakwaka'wakw Bird Mask , from Alert Bay, Vancouver Island, Canada. Prior to 1952. Cedar wood, cedar bark, feathers, and fiber, 10 x 72 x 15” During this ceremony the masked bird dancers appear. Snapping their beaks, these masters of illusion enter the room backward, their masks pointed up as though the birds are looking skyward. They move slowly counter-clockwise around the floor. At each change in the music they crouch, snap their beaks, and let out their wild cries of Hap! Hap! Hap! Essential to the ritual dances are the huge carved and painted wooden masks, articulated and operated by strings worked by the dancers. Among the finest masks are those by Willie Seaweed, a Kwakwaka'wakw chief.
The Southwest The Native American peoples of the southwest include the Pueblo (village-dwelling) groups and the Navajo The Pueblo groups are heirs to the ancient Anasazi and Hohokam cultures, which developed a settled, agricultural way of life around 550 CE The Navajo, who moved into the region about the 11 th century or later, developed a semisedentary way of life based on agriculture and, after the introduction of sheep by the Spanish, sheepherding Both groups' arts reflect the adaptation of traditional forms to new technologies, new mediums, and the influences of the dominant American culture that surrounds them
Taos Pueblo This it located in north-central New Mexico Taos once served as a trading center between Plains and Pueblo peoples it burned in 1690 but was rebuilt about 1700 and has often been modified since “ Great houses,” multifamily dwellings, stand on either side of Taos Creek, rising in a stepped fashion to form a series of roof terraces. The houses border a plaza that opens toward the neighboring mountains. The plaza and roof terraces are centers of communal life and ceremony
23-19. Maria Montoya Martinez and Julian Martinez. Blackware storage jar , from Sam Ildefonso Pueblo, New Mexico. c. 1942. Ceramic. Height 18 3/4” inspired by prehistoric blackware pottery that was unearthed at nearby archaeological excavations, she and Maria Montoya Martinez's husband, Julian Martinez, developed a distinctive new ware decorated with matte (nongloss) black forms on a lustrous black background Maria made pots covered with a slip that was then burnished using additional slip, Julian painted the pots with designs that combined traditional Pueblo imagery and the then fashionable Euro-American Art Deco style after firing, the burnished ground became a lustrous black and the slip painting retained a matte surface pottery traditionally was a woman's art among Pueblo peoples, whose wares were made by coiling and other hand-building techniques, then fired at low temperature in wood bonfires
23-20. Pablita Velarde. Koshares of Taos , from Santa Clara Pueblo, New Mexico. Watercolor on paper, 13 7/8 x 22 3/8” -- Velarde's painting combines bold, flat colors and a simplified decorative line with European perspective to produce a kind of Art Deco abstraction Koshares of Taos illustrates a moment during a ceremony celebrating the winter solstice when koshares, or clowns, take over the plaza from the kachinas – the supernatural counterparts of animals, natural phenomena like clouds, and geological features like mountains – who are central to traditional Pueblo religion -- Kachinas become manifest in the human dancers who impersonate them during the winter solstice ceremony, as well as in the small figures known as kachina dolls that are given to children
<ul><li>- Navajo women are renowned for their skill as weavers </li></ul><ul><li>-According to Navajo mythology, the universe itself is a kind of weaving, spun by Spider Woman out of sacred cosmic materials </li></ul><ul><li>-Spider woman taught the art of weaving to Changing Woman (mother earth figure) who taught the Navajo women. </li></ul><ul><li>Spider Woman Changing Woman Navajo Women </li></ul><ul><li>-Navajo Blankets: </li></ul><ul><li>-simple horizontal stripes </li></ul><ul><li>-white, black, and brown colors </li></ul><ul><li>-Mid 19 th Century: developed a new technique of unraveling the fibers from commercially manufactured and dyed blankets and reusing them in their own work </li></ul>The Navajos: Weaving
-Sand paintings are made to the accompaniment of chants by shaman-singers in the course of healing and blessing ceremonies and have great sacred significance. -Paintings depict mythic heroes and events -To make them, the singer dribbles pulverized colored stones, pollen, flowers, and other natural colors over a hide or sand ground - The rituals are intended to restore harmony to the world and so to achieve cures -They are not meant for public display and are destroyed by nightfall of the day on which they are made *In 1919, a respected shaman-singer named Hosteen Klah began to incorporate sand-painting images into weavings, breaking with the traditional prohibition against making them permanent. -many Navajos took offense at Klah both for recording the sacred images and for doing so in a woman’s art form -Klah’s work was ultimately accepted because of his great skill and prestige The Navajos: Sand Paintings
- sand painting - depicts a part of the Navajo creation myth in which the Holy People divide the world into four parts and create the Earth Surface People (humans) -bring forth corn, beans, squash and tobacco, the four sacred plants -Holy People surround the image -A male-female pair of humans stands in each of the four quarters defined by the central cross -The guardian figure of Rainbow Maiden encloses the scene on three sides -The open side represents the east Whirling Log Ceremony Hosteen Klah 5’5” x 5’10” Navajo, c. 1925 E S W N
Bill Reid <ul><li>1920-1998 </li></ul><ul><li>Canadian Haida artist </li></ul><ul><li>Sought to sustain and revitalize the traditions of Northwest Coast art in his work </li></ul><ul><li>Trained as a wood carver, painter, and jeweler </li></ul><ul><li>Reid revived the art of carving dugout canoes and totem poles in the Haida homeland of Haida Gwaii- “Islands of the People”-known on maps today as the Queen of Charlotte Islands </li></ul><ul><li>Late in life he began to create large-scale sculpture in bronze. With their black patina, these works recall tradional Haida carvings in argillite, a shiny black stone </li></ul>
The Spirit of Haida Gwaii Bill Reid Bronze; 13’ x 20’ Haida, 1991 <ul><li>The Eagle, in turn, is bitten by the Seawolf. The Eagle and the Seawolf, together with the man behind them, nevertheless continue paddling. </li></ul><ul><li>Steering the canoe, is the Raven, the trickster in Haida mythology. </li></ul><ul><li>The Raven, assisted by Mousewoman, the traditional guide and escort of humans in the spirit realms </li></ul><ul><li>On the other side are the Bear mother and her twins, the Beaver, and the Godfish Woman. </li></ul><ul><li>According to Reid, the work represents a “mythological and environmental lifeboat,” where “the entire family of living things…whatever their differences,…are paddling together in one boat, headed in one direction.” </li></ul>
Jaune Quick-to-See Smith <ul><li>b. 1940 </li></ul><ul><li>Born on the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Reservation in western Montana and is enrolled there </li></ul><ul><li>Combines traditional and contemporary forms to convey political and social messages </li></ul><ul><li>Quick-to-See created paintings and collages of great formal beauty that also confronted viewers with their own, perhaps unwitting, stereotypes </li></ul><ul><li>As Gerrit Henry wrote in Art in America (November 2001), Smith “looks at things Native and national through bifocals of the old and the new, the sacred and the profane, the divine and the witty.” </li></ul>
Trade (Gifts for Trading Land with White People) Jaune Quick-to-See Smith 5’ x 14’2” Salish-Cree-Shoshone 1992 <ul><li>A stately canoe floats over a richly colored and textured field (which on closer inspection proves to be a dense collage of clippings from Native American newspapers) </li></ul><ul><li>Wide swatches and rivulets of red, yellow, green, and white cascade over the newspaper collage </li></ul><ul><li>On a chain above the painting is a collection of Native American cultural artifacts- tomahawks, beaded belts, feather headdresses- and memorabilia for sports teams like the Atlanta Braces, the Washington Redskins, and the Cleveland Indians, anmes that many Native Americans find offensive. </li></ul><ul><li>Surely, the painitng suggests, Native Americans could trade these goods to retrieve their lost lands, just as European settlers traded trinkets with Native Americans to acquire the lands in the first place </li></ul>