The Ecuador Chronicles - 2011-26
A Review of Oswaldo Guayasamin;
But First a Few Thoughts on Independence Day;
The Guayasamin Archaeologoical Collection
Live Well Ecuador presents a three part series on Ecuador Artist Oswaldo Guayasamin. We will cover:
We continue this week with the Guayasamin Archaeological Collection.
But First, a few thoughts on the Fourth of July
by Ray Almand
Fourth of July, 2011 - Isn't It Ironic
This Fourth of July has been Ironic for me in several ways.
First, for Father's Day the kids gave Dalynda and me tickets to a Beatles tribute concert on July 1st. In the end three of them ended up going with us. We made a whole night of it, including dinner. The concert was in an old converted movie theatre in the Little Five Points area of Atlanta. Some parts of the theatre had tables - the kids got there early and managed to get a table for us with a great view of the stage. We had popcorn and beer as we watched the concert. The performance was by Abby Road Live who frequently do Beatles tribute shows. In addition there was a seven piece orchestral section - all girls - two violins, a cello and horns. The emphasis was on songs the Beatles recorded but never performed together live. There were even two clarinets for "When I'm Sixty-Four". They made a little joke about dueling clairnets and played a few clarinet bars from the "Deliverance" theme - as you might imagine, that was quite humorous.
I got to thinking that it was ironic to start the Fourth of July weekend with a concert of British music. But it was also appropriate. After the War for Independence and another disagreement around 1812 the United Kingdom has been America's true friend in the world - The Special Relationship. Some commentators have questioned whether The Special Relationship still exists or if it is still appropriate. Well, here is what I think: The Special Relationship is alive and well. How could it ever, ever be otherwise. Beatle music is a great way to start the Fourth.
Second, before writing this Chronicle I went back and reviewed last year's Fourth of July Chronicle. The ironic thing is that it could have been written this year - right down to the reference to Greece. I suppose that means that not much progress has been made over the year. But I am still an optimistic person - we will get through this as we always have. Take a look for yourself:
The third irony is that we are in the middle of a three part review of Oswaldo Guayasamin on this Fourth of July weekend. I think we could safely say that Guayasamin did not feel much admiration for the USA. The emails I have received after last week's Chronicle are at least two to one anti-Guayasamin. There are definitely people who don't like Guayasamin from an artistic, intellectual or ideological perspective - or perhaps all three. Some have questioned why I would even cover Guayasamin at all. Well, the purpose of the Ecuador Chronicles is to cover Ecuador. Oswaldo Guayasamin is a part of Ecuador - and highly regarded by some Ecuadorians and more so internationally. As you wander around art markets in Ecuador you will find that his art is highly imitated. So, to gain a better understanding of Ecuador it is worthwhile to devote some attention to Guayasamin. Whether we like it of not.
The Guayasamin Archaeological Collection
Oswaldo Guayasamin was an avid collector of Pre-Colombian artifacts, including more than 4,500 ceramic, bone and metal pieces that were found throughout Ecuador. The collection is in the same location as the museum (covered in last week's chronicle). The pieces are arranged by type - not by era or cultural group. So, Bowls are with bowls, fertility figures are with fertility figures, etc, without regard to their timeframe or the civilization that created them. This is different from the more standard way of displaying archaeological artifacts in a timeline for a particular cultural group. I enjoyed the look of it even if it may be confusing from a scientific perspective. Here are a few pictures - take a look for yourself.
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