Friday, March 17, 2017

Elizabeth Boone: Painted Words

Elizabeth Boone, Professor of Art History and Chair of the Newcomb Art Department, authored a new book,  Painted Words: Nahua Catholicism, Politics, and Memory in the Atzaqualco Pictorial Catechism (Dumbarton Oaks, Washington, DC).

A collaboration between Boone, anthropologist Louise Burkhart, and historian David Tavárez, Painted Words presents a facsimile, decipherment, and analysis of a spectacular pictographic catechism from colonial Mexico. It records the Catholic catechism in pictures that were read sign by sign as aids to memorization and oral performance. Probably created for the family of the last Preconquest Aztec ruler Moctezuma, it shows how colonial manuscript painters reimagined Pre-Columbian writing and early evangelization, and articulated newly emerging assertions of indigenous identity and memorialized native history.

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