November 8, 2014 Lisa DeLeonardis, PhD, Austen-Stokes Professor in Art of the Ancient Americas, Johns Hopkins University:  "Color Networks: The Use and Exchange of Paracas Post-Fire Pigments"

             The Paracas, ca. 900 BC – AD 100, of south coastal Peru have long been recognized for their outstanding contributions to the visual arts. Color played a major role in ceramic works and was achieved by conventional and post-fired methods. The latter produced a vibrant color palette as seen on containers, figures, effigies, and musical instruments. At first glance, the processes involved in post-fired painting appear to be those common to all painters: grind the colorants, create the paint, and stay within the (incised) lines. In this paper, DeLeonardis demonstrated that painting relied on a number of processes, specialists, and a far-flung exchange network. Her analyses bear on questions about the technical qualities of paints as well as the intrinsic value of color.
Lisa DeLeonardis is the Austen-Stokes Professor in Art of the Ancient Americas in the Department of the History of Art at Johns Hopkins University. She has conducted a number of projects in south coastal Peru centering on Paracas and Nasca visual culture and history. As a Dumbarton Oaks summer fellow, she investigated questions about Inka occupational specialists and evaluated the kamayuq as a construct to more broadly address the social organization of artists and guilds in the pre-Hispanic Andes. Her current study of value in Paracas ceramic production and process continues this inquiry.  DeLeonardis is a contributing author to Andean Archaeology, Silverman, ed., 2004, Guide to Documentary Sources for Andean Studies 1530-1900, Pillsbury, ed., 2008, and The Construction of Value in the Ancient World, Papadopoulos and Urton, eds., 2012. She is concurrently completing manuscripts on the Paracas of Callango and the architectural and social history of Santa Cruz de Lanchas.

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