Children of the Plumed Serpent: The Legacy of Quetzalcoatl in Ancient Mexico
- Aug. 6, 2012
July 27-November 25, 2012
Chilton Gallery II and Focus Gallery I
Children of the Plumed Serpent illuminates the social and cultural complexities of late pre-Columbian and early colonial eras as expressed in the art of the period and examines the enduring nature of these complexities in contemporary Mesoamerican societies. Recent scholarship demonstrates that a confederacy of city-states in southern Mexico, largely dominated by Nahua, Mixtec, and Zapotec nobility, successfully resisted both Aztec and Spanish subjugation. Calling themselves the "Children of the Plumed Serpent" because of their belief that Quetzalcoatl, the human incarnation of the Plumed Serpent, had founded their royal lineages, this ruling class of nobles, called caciques, resurrected themselves and continued to affect cultural development in Mesoamerica during a dramatic period of social transformation.
This nationally touring exhibition will explore the extraordinary wonders in codices, polychrome ceramics, gold, turquoise, shell, textiles, and other precious materials that were produced by these confederacies between A.D. 1200 and 1500, whose influence spread throughout Mesoamerica by means of vast networks of trade and exchange.
This exhibition was organized by the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and made possible by the National Endowment for the Humanities. Additional support was provided by the Ethnic Arts Council of Los Angeles. Carol Robbins, The Ellen and Harry S. Parker III Curator of the Arts of the Americas and the Pacific at the Dallas Museum of Art, is the curator of the Dallas presentation.