Native groups in early Americas were artists, too. They used stone to express themselves. What they hoped to say has been lost to the ages, but a group of 25 artists have recreated some of the ancient work in time for a show that opens Saturday.
The show is “The Petroglyphs of the Orosí Volcano: The Hidden Messages of Ancestral and Contemporary Art.”
Said the Hidden Garden Gallery, where the show is to open:
” . . . a group of 25 leading artists have studied and researched these artifacts and were inspired to transform them into visual arts. Recreating original interpretations, and developing new interpretations, the artists hope to perpetually document these relics, which are becoming endangered, and are not easily seen by the Costa Rican communities and tourists.”
Participating artists include: Fernando Carballo, Otto Apuy, Florencia Urbina, Emanuel Rodríguez, Leda Astorga, Ana Elena Fernández, Aurelio Vidor, Carlos Hiller, Roberto Lizano, Fabio Herrera, Mario Maffioli, Claudio Vidor, José Jackson Guadamuz, Rebeca Alvarado Soto, Jonathan Torres, Shi Chang,
Adela Marín, Priscila Aguirre, Angel Lara, Karen Clachar, Sussy Vargas, Juan Carlos Ruiz, Norma Varela, Gabriela García, and Ricardo Alfieri.
Hiller and Ms. Alvarado have organized the show. The show opens at 10 a.m. at the gallery, which is five kilometers west of the Daniel Oduber airport.
Petroglyphs date back at least 15,000 years, but the ones at the Orosi volcano are believed to be about 1,500 years old. That is still well before the arrival of the Europeans to Costa Rica. The glyphs here are more complex than many elsewhere. The feature fish, stylized animals and even what appears to be a shaman.
The artist were influenced by the original glyph and then created their own work.