Arriving the post yesterday was my long awaited copy of Mario Testino’s epic homage to the city of Lima. Testino explains the motivation behind the book “I searched for years for a book about Lima because I wanted to show people that Peru is not only about the Andes and llamas. For me, the magic of Lima is in its mix, and I wanted to find a book that reflects its amazing diversity. One of the great pleasures of returning to Lima as an adult has been discovering contemporary Peruvian artists, whose work shares common themes to do with exploring national consciousness. I decided to incorporate their work in a book along side images that represent the Lima that I know today, as well as the Lima that resides in my memory—from growing up there in the ‘70s. I am particularly thankful to all the artists whose work appears in this book because not only did I discover many things through them, but I also realized that my sense of aesthetics is part of a collective one; one rooted in my city. I hope this book serves to help people discover how fabulous Lima is.”
Testino definitely captures the essense of Lima in this book.
Double page spread from Lima book
Although picked up in a market in Peru, this is actually Mexican papier-mâché.
c. 1200 – 1400
This preserved mummy, a member of the Chimu culture that flourished from around 1100 until it was absorbed into the Inca civilisation in the late 1400s, is from the north coast of Peru.
On burial, the body would have been seated in an upright position, with the head on its knees. The body was interred with personal possessions, ritual objects and food offerings, revealing a strong belief in a continuing existence after death.
Posted in art
Tagged inca, mummified, peru
Lurking under the San Francisco Monastery in Lima, Peru is one of the finest collections of skulls and bones to be found!
Skulls in a pit at the San Francisco Monastery and Catacombs, Lima
Originally constructed in 1546, it is one of the oldest churches in South America. It also served as the first official Catholic cemetery in Lima, at a time when the dead were laid to rest in catacombs beneath the church. The process for the bodies brought down to the catacombs was roughly to lie the fresh bodies in troughs of lime – to isolate the bones and then move the bones to larger storage areas – ordered on size.
It’s a great place to visit – with a tour guide and no photos allowed (something I choose to disregard!). There is much that still hasn’t been excavated, but what is there is well worth a visit.
Chamber in the San Francisco Monastery and Catacombs, Lima
Pit of bones, San Francisco Monastery and Catacombs