The Museo Rafael Larco Herrera is a ceramic artistīs paradise with something like 50,000 ceramic pieces. First we went through the main collection featuring Moche, Inca and other groups. Most of the pieces were drinking vessels with the spout rising from the handle but aside from that there seemed to be every possible variation--animals, faces, painted geometric designs, scenes, all beautiful and individual.
There were also some intersting tapestry pieces including one I liked with creatures that I first thought were some kind of crocodile since they had long pointed tails but were actually a type of feline deity with a long tail and a grin like the Cheshire Cat...could the Cheshire Cat actually have been an incarnation of a Peruvian cat deity?
The thing that really blew us away was the storage
room: shelves and shelves full of ceramic vessels, all sorted by type. There were shelves of people relaxing, people with domesticated animals, faces, vegetables, falcons, toads, shells, snails, demons, medical topics and on and on. It seemed like a catalog in clay of all the objects and creatures the sculptors ever encountered. It made me wish I was an art historian so I could study inspiration and culture. Why did they show people weaving but not cooking? Sleeping but not playing sports? Why did some places develop such a psychadelic stylized form of decoration when others were more realistic? Did they make vessels from all the birds and animals or did they avoid some? Overwhelmed and amazed we headed to the famous erotic ceramics hall which featured ceramics of copulation
both animal and human as well as featuring the dead. There were humorous figures with exagerated genetalia and even some depicting guys with syphalis sores. This made me wonder if these drinking vessels were really used as drinking vessels because who would want to drink from a vessel depicting that?!!!
Anyway, both Rowshan and I will probably have to do some more research in this area.