Archaeology, Tourism and Invented Tradition: Contemporary Maya Sculpture in Yucatán
Sponsored by AIA-Milwaukee Society, UWM depts of FLL-Classics, Anthropology, Art History
AIA Society Event: Milwaukee
Sunday, December 5, 2010 - 3:00pm
UWM Sabin Hall Room G90
3413 North Downer Ave
Milwaukee, WI 53211
Dr. Jeff Kowalski, Northern Illinois University, will discuss the development of a recent "tradition" of wood carving in northwest Yucatán. He will focus on the work of several artisans who supplement their income (primarily derived from work as guardians or guides at local archaeological sites such as Kabah, Labna, or Sayil) by creating expertly crafted and aesthetically engaging wood sculptures. These artworks are inspired by, and often based closely on images from Classic Maya stelae, lintels, and ceramics, or Postclassic painted manuscripts. The carvings provide both a creative outlet and an economic benefit for their makers and they are intended to appeal to tourists visiting Maya sites such as Uxmal, Kabah, Sayil, or Labna.