Sunday, December 14, 2008

08/09 Academic Decathlon Image #13

View of the Street of the Dead, Showing the Plaza of the Moon and the Pyramid of the Sun, Teotihuacan, 1-750 A.D. (Pre-Hispanic Art)

This city flourished at a time that was known as the Classic Period from 150-900 A.D. A lot of growth and development happened at this time leading the city to have great influence in the region. Because of the material culture left behind in their ruins, experts can surmise that there was a lot of trade and political domination. Teotihuacan (as well as Remojadas mentioned in a previous post) are in close proximity to the Gulf of Mexico.

The culture was sophisticated (and the 6th most populous city in the world in 600 A.D.). The city had religious and political rulers (along with the requisite warriors!) and was surrounded by peasant farmers. The Maya and Zapotec peoples had writing systems that were well developed. There were may gods that were worshipped who seem to have spun out of the Olmec deities. Some of these even became important to the Aztecs. As a result of the cultural development the people built monumental civic and ritual architecture to show their Power & Authority (a common theme in the Art History class!). We see the pyramid shape as a dominant shape for their temples and tombs (familiar???). Check out the hyperlink in the image title to go to an guide to the archeological site in Teotihuacan.


Roman M said...

Roman M

These are the kind of pieces i enjoy seeing because you can tell how much work was put into this by the detail of the painting

Dyaimdee J. said...

I love historical monument paintings. It shows the past civilaizations that lived before us and how they left their mark on the world. This picture has multiple monuments showing the great detail that our ancestors put into their work.

Anonymous said...

I actually went to Teotihuacan when I was little. This ancient city is full of geometric figures which had a special presence in that civilization. When on a tour there, I learned that the triangle was considered holy because it was supposed to be the number of perfect balance. The Aztecs used strong lines and symbols for not only their art but also for their writing. Stone and metal were consistently used because of the abundance of these resources in the surrounding area. Something else to keep in mind is that the Aztecs built their temples according to the processes of nature such as the movement of the stars. By seeing the Temple of the Moon and Sun and witnessing them in person, I noticed that these structures have strong form and contain a rough, grainy texture.

Anna G.
2nd Period

Adrian B, 2 said...

Like Anna, I also went to Teotihuacan but in the summer after 7th grade. When I went there I found the Street of the Dead almost empty except for a few vendors and some tourists. Everyone else was crowded in either the Pyramid of the Sun or the Pyramid of the Moon. Both have unbelivable views, but the Pyramid of the Sun attracts more attention becuase you can actually go to the top. Its amazing that the Aztects built these pyramids without tools or machines, but what's fascinating is the WAY they built these pyramids. The Mayans and Aztects were great astronomers and alligned the pyramid perfectly so that on the soltice(or equinox) the sun is directly above it. Its important to know, in Art, the reason and the way you make a work of art, and this city IS a work of art.