Archive for the Culture Category

SELARON

Posted in Brazil, Culture on June 2, 2009 by amautadiaries

 

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Jorge Selarón was born in Chile in 1947. He traveled, lived and worked as a painter and sculptor in over 50 countries around the world before arriving and deciding to settle in Rio de Janeiro in 1983.    

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In 1990, Selarón began renovating a dilapidated stairway that ran along the font of his house. At first, neighbours mocked him for his choice of colours as he covered the steps in fragments of blue, green and yellow tiles – the colours of the Brazilian flag.  It was a tribute to the Brazilian people. 

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It started out as a side-project to his main passion, painting, but soon became an obsession. It has turned out to be the most original stairway in the world: 125 meters high with 215 steps. It contains over 2,000 different tiles from more than 60 countries. 

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The tiles are constanlty changing, a unique technique, which results in a special energy that brings the work of art to life. Selarón considers the work as “never complete,” like life, art is constantly changing. 

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It became a madness as many times he had his hands covered in blood, with calluses, and pain. He pressed on even when he was without money. At times he ate little, his phone was cut off, and he was threatened to be evicted from his house due to being unable to afford living costs.  

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 He sold many paintings and accepted contributions from locals and travelers to continue his work. It was long and exhaustive work but he continued on and eventually covered the entire set of stairs in tiles, ceramics and mirrors.

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Of the 2000+ tiles, 300-oddly enough are hand painted by Selarón depicting a pregnant African woman.  Selarón doesn’t comment on this except to say that it is a “Personal problem from my past.” He has sold over 30,000 paintings, all of them featuring the same pregnant women which mostly funded his work. 

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The work has been featured in many famous magazines, newspapers, travel shows, documentaries and commercials. National Geographic Channel, American Express, Coca-cola, Time and Playboy are just some of the media that the stairway has appeared in/on. It has also been featured in numerous video clips and films such as Snoop Dogg’s Beautiful and the Incredible Hulk. 

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It is considered an iconic tourist attraction of Rio de Janeiro with travellers from across the globe visiting it every day. Many take part by sending in a title from their country to continue the masterpiece. To contribute send a tile to: Stairway Selaron, #24(atras da Sala Cecilia Meireles) CEP: 20241-120 Santa Tereza, Rio de Janeiro-Brasil

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It has been a labor of love for the artist who still resides in the same house by the stairs he lived in when he started the work. He is mostly unfazed by the attention given to him by curious onlookers and tourists alike. He is constantly spotted at the stairway working by day and treating drunken revelers to fascinating anecdotes by night.  

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 “This crazy and unique dream will only end on the day of my death.” – Selaron

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THE ORDER OF THE INCA

Posted in Culture, Peru on May 26, 2009 by amautadiaries

                                                                   299px-Inca_head_svg     The Incan moral code—ama suwa, ama llulla, ama quella

       so that you may live in the Sun’s warmth”

        

CULTURE IS ETERNAL

Posted in Culture, Imperialism, Latin America, Peru on May 26, 2009 by amautadiaries

Peru_MP_MachuPicchuIn Cuzco in 1589, Don Mancio Serra de Leguisamo — one of the last survivors of the original conquerors of Peru—wrote in the preamble of his will, the following, in parts:

We found these kingdoms in such good order, and they said Incas governed them in such wise [manner] that throughout them there was not a thief, nor a vicious man, nor an adulteress, nor was a bad woman admitted among them, nor were there immoral people. The men had honest and useful occupations. The lands, forests, mines, pastures, houses and all kinds of products were regulated and distributed in such sort that each one knew his property without any other person seizing it or occupying it, nor were there law suits respecting it… the motive which obliges me to make this statement is the discharge of my conscience, as I find myself guilty. For we have destroyed by our evil example, the people who had such a government as was enjoyed by these natives. They were so free from the committal of crimes or excesses, as well men as women, that the Indian who had 100,000 pesos worth of gold or silver in his house, left it open merely placing a small stick against the door, as a sign that its master was out. With that, according to their custom, no one could enter or take anything that was there. When they saw that we put locks and keys on our doors, they supposed that it was from fear of them, that they might not kill us, but not because they believed that anyone would steal the property of another. So that when they found that we had thieves among us, and men who sought to make their daughters commit sin, they despised us.”

PIZARRO Y ATAHUALPA

Posted in Culture, Imperialism, Peru on May 24, 2009 by amautadiaries

                                                                                         

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   Esta es la historia del secuestro de Atahualpa a manos de Pizarro.   

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Francisco Pizarro González, marqués (Trujillo, Cáceres, 16 de marzo de 1476 — Lima, 26 de junio de 1541) fue el explorador y conquistador español del Perú, gobernador de Nueva Castilla (actual territorio peruano) con sede de gobierno en Los Reyes(Lima). Es recordado por haber logrado imponerse sobre la civilización Inca con ayuda de diversos cacicazgos locales, conquistando el mencionado imperio cuyo centro de gobierno se ubicaba en el hoy Perú, y estableciendo una dependencia española sobre él. Si bien tuvo el título de marqués, fue “marqués sin marquesado “; sus descendientes tuvieron el título de marqueses de la Conquista. LLegó em 1530 d. C. al Perú.

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El 16 de noviembre de 1532 tuvo lugar el caso documentado de secuestro en el suramericano. Un grupo de españoles dirigido por Francisco Pizarro se apoderó por la fuerza del inca Atahualpa, quien había aceptado una a cenar y había llegado al campamento en el alto valle de Cajamarca, en las montañas del Perú, con un lujoso cortejo ceremonial de incas desarmados.

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Como resultado Atahualpa fue apresado en un palacio de Cajamarca; según Guaman Poma de Ayala estuvo sumergido en una época de depresion porque le quitaron a su coya (mujer), su riqueza y su reino. Cuenta que lloró, no comió mucho y dormía poco.En prisión Atahualpa organizó a espaldas de los españoles dos ejércitos, uno bajo el mando de Chalcuchimac para que fuese a Cajamarca a liberarlo y el otro bajo el mando de Quisquis para que tomase Cuzco y eliminara cualquier vestigio de Huáscar. 

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Estando preso se hizo amigo de Pizarro, y le tuvo admiración a Hernando Pizarro, de quien dijo era un gran señor. También jugaba mucho a la “Taptana”, un juego de mesa inca que algunos historiadores confundieron con el ajedrez. Según crónicas, aprendió castellano en veinte días. En prisión, Atahualpa ofreció a cambio de su liberación llenar dos habitaciones de plata y una de oro “hasta donde alcanzara su mano”, los españoles aceptaron y de inmediato se mandó la orden a todo el imperio inca de que enviasen la mayor cantidad posible de oro y plata hacia Cajamarca. 

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Después de cumplir su parte los españoles lo setenciaron a muerte por idolatría, fraticidio, poligamia, incesto y lo acusaron de ocultar un tesoro. Se le concedió una última opción: ser bautizado como cristiano y luego ahorcado o ser quemado vivo. Al escoger la primera opción fue bautizado con el nombre cristiano de Francisco. Se cree que Francisco Pizarro lloró su muerte. (Pedro Pizarro narra en su crónica: “yo vi llorar al Marqués”). Fue ejecutado el 26 de julio de 1533.

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La noticia de su muerte originó una gran anarquía, muchas etnias incas se sublevaron e intentaron recuperar su independencia. Fue enterrado en la iglesia de Cajamarca pero unos días después su cadáver desapareció misteriosamente; probablemente sus súbditos lo profanaron para momificarlo y ocultarlo. Tras su muerte, muchos incas partidarios de Huáscar (como Manco Inca) se unieron a los españoles para derrotar a Chalcuchimac, Quisquis y los demás partidarios de Atahualpa.

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Pizarro acaba asi con el ultimo emperador Inca, e inicia una guerra por el lugar y el adoctrinamiento de los Incas….  Luego Pizarro por una tración a Diego de Almagro va a morir… 

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Este imperialismo colonial conitinua hoy, y no solo en Latino America sino tambien en el Africa, Asia, y mas obvio Irak y Afganistan. Los actores han cambiado y tambien los recursos. Ahorra ya no son los espanoles sino varios estados y corporaciones que estan en la busqueda de explotar los recursos naturales de todo el mundo. Por eso vemos las guerras que continuran hasta que aiga un paro de estas injusticas presentes por causa del Imperialismo.

BASTA!!!