The Mochica and their Pottery


"Since 'the pottery of the Mochicas is their language', their ceramics are the best known of all the Peruvian pre-Inca cultures; first because they have been so well preserved, and second, because of their realismů. Every detail of their lives seems to have been recorded. The flora of the desert and the cultivated plants are all depicted in their pottery; the fauna from the sea and fauna of the land are so faithfully molded that the species of each is identifiable.

The Mochicas' attitude towards animals is much like that of early Egyptians, for whom animals and birds played an active and very vital role in the day to day business of their lives. The naturalistic animal portraits sculptured by the Mochicas speak for themselves; yet it is the tenderness, the affectionate manner of moulding or painting them that brings this art of the Mochica and the Egyptian togetherů Unrivaled in the Americas as a portrayers of animals, the Mochica artist applied his keen observation to all the animals that inhabited his world.

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