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Metalurgia de America Precolombina / Precolumbian American Metallurgy

45th International Congress of Americanist

ISBN 10: 9589028373 / ISBN 13: 9789589028377
Published by Banco de la Republica, Bogota, 1986
Condition: Very Good Soft cover
From Moe's Books (Berkeley, CA, U.S.A.)

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Bibliographic Details

Title: Metalurgia de America Precolombina / ...

Publisher: Banco de la Republica, Bogota

Publication Date: 1986

Binding: Soft cover

Book Condition:Very Good

Dust Jacket Condition: No Jacket

About this title


The beauty, splendour and lavishness of American metal-work long fascinated those who saw it, thereby justifying its existence. It seemed that the greed of the treasure-hunters and collectors grew as the interest of researchers waned. The fear of being involved in large sums of money or of being witnesses to or accomplices in the vandalism and destruction of the treasure-seekers increased their scepticism about the value of such studies. In the region which is today Colombia, so rich in metalwork as shown by its collections, this almost total lack of research until the second half of the twentieth century is remarkable. Archaeology deliberately avoided areas known to contain gold. Indeed, metal production as important as that called 'Qimbaya' has a cultural context which is still far from clear. Since 1970, as this volume will show, specialists from very different disciplines have contributed to a deeper knowledge of the societies which produced metal objects. Metallurgy began to be viewed as any other technology -- such as pottery, or stone-work- as a part a socio-cultural system. An attempt is made to see beyond the glitter of the pieces. We have the studies on ancient mining communities (Rodriguez), their choice of and methods of alloying local metals (Grinberg, Rubinovich & Gasca, Hosler), techniques employed to give shape or create bas-relief effects (Sonin), to join metals (Griffin), to gild (Scott), or conceal mechanical tricks from the eye of the observer (Howe), as well as studies of formal aspects (Lunsford), and other more general studies and comparative analyses between cultures in different areas (Lechtman, Cooke, Plazas & Falchetti). All of these allow a broader vision of metallurgy in the Americas and of the many different ways in which solutions to all kinds of technical problems were sought by the peoples of the Americas over three thousand years of social needs. They created what Heather Lechtman has called the metallurgy.

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