Artefactos: Colombian Crafts from the Andes to the Amazon

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Villegas Asociados, 2000 - Art - 240 pages
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The artifacts that remain today from ancient Columbian civilizations reveal a remarkable people-who built homes that could withstand the elements in the world's wettest rain forest, carved monumental statues of their ancient ancestors and sacred spirits, and tantalized the western world with the beauty of their golden objects set with the finest emeralds. These artifacts serve not only as a testimony of the great achievements of cultures that disappeared long ago, but as patterns and inspirations for those who still carry on these craft traditions in the tropical rain forests or snow-capped mountains of what is today Columbia.

This book presents artifacts—or artefactos—from everyday life, objects that have accompanied Columbian people through the centuries, both in their earthly and spiritual activities. In both English and Spanish, the word artifact means, literally, "made with skill or art." Although all worthy of museums and galleries, these are not just exhibition pieces, nor are their makers all members of a separate artisan class. There is no Columbian home, however humble, that does not have a handmade broom, stool, basket, textile, or rustic furniture; nor is there a single Amazon Indian who cannot quickly piece together a basket from leaves found in the jungle.

Many of the crafts made today still retain a significance beyond the strictly utilitarian, from the basket holder whose hourglass shape is a fertility symbol to the stool carved by a young man as a sign of his goldwork to basketry, weaving to pottery, are an astounding body of work and provide a lesson in how people use their natural environment—and their hands—to create splendid objects and surrounds.

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Artefactos: Colombian crafts from the Andes to the Amazon

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This remarkable book contains excellent color photographs, commissioned especially for the work, and text covering a topic about which very little has been written in English. The artefactos ... Read full review

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Section 1
Section 2
Section 3
Section 4
Section 5
Section 6
Section 7
Section 8
Section 11
Section 12
Section 13
Section 14
Section 15
Section 16
Section 17
Section 18

Section 9
Section 10
Section 19

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About the author (2000)

Liliana Villegas, sensitive connoisseur of popular traditions, knows, as very few people do, the country's natural materials and how the people of Columbia have transformed them throughout time. Her first work in this area was the book entitled, Iwouya (Like the Stars that Announce the Arrival of the Rains), which uncovers and explains the Guajira through its weaving (1982). Her 1988 contribution, Artefactos, is a valuable rescuing of Viejo Caldas' regional artisan production. Her studies include degrees in Textiles at the Universidad de los Andes and Fine Arts at Parsons School of Design in New York, Paris and Japan. Delicious Tropical Fruits (1990), her latest effort, is one of the most successful books ever published in the country.

Benjamin Villegas (Bogota, 1948), has distinguished himself nationally as the editor par excellence of large format, illustrated books on the subjects related to Columbia's art, history, architecture, natural resources and applied arts. His broad and varied expertise is the result of twenty eight years of dedication to the publishing industry during which he has produced more than hundred works.

A graduate of the School of Architecture of the Universidad de los Andes and the Universidad Jorge Tadeo Lozano (Bogota) in Graphic Arts with experience in the visual media of television and cinema, he knows and manages the esthetics and material culture of his country based on solid criteria. His books, examples of the highest quality in graphic expression, have earned international acclaim. This work, of which he is both co-author and editor, is being released simultaneously in English by the renown New York publishing house, Rizzoli International, under the title of Artefactos, Columbian Crafts, from the Andes to the Amazon.

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