While researching the Atocha project,
a lot of time was spent on investigating the history of Peru and Central America. The Inca and Mayan cultures in particular.
The central God in Mayan culture was (is) Quetzalcoatl.
Bear in mind that most of the original gold and silver ingots shipped by the Spanish from the New World to Spain were, previously, Mayan art.
The Spanish were on one mission, to Conquer…
That had several dictums, First, get treasure to fortify the Spanish war effort (against pretty much everyone), second , to convert everyone to Catholicism. So, the Maya, seeing things a bit differently, and thinking that Cortez was their Savior incarnate (a sort of mythical Christ figure) graciously gave the Spanish gold, silver and gems items as gifts, a welcoming to a new era…
While the welcoming didn’t last too long, the treasures registered on the Spanish intellect (sic)… There must be a source for these precious metals and gems…
So the enslavement began.
More to come.
The piece shown here is composed of a series of carvings/castings in 18K yellow rose and white gold.
This is a replica of a Mayan stone carving of Quetzalcoatl.
A reminder of the great art that was destroyed in the name of greed and mis-guided politics.
Enjoy & think a bit…
Photo, Sylvia Bissonnette
Art , Beth Eyler-Wong / J. Grahl