The Art of Mesoamerica

Review

by
published on 28 November 2013

Another wonderfully informative book from the World of Art series. This one makes a marvelous introduction to Mesoamerica as not only does it cover the fascinating and utterly distinctive art of civilizations such as the Maya, Aztecs and Olmecs but its 300 pages are absolutely stuffed with stunning colour photographs of art and archaeological sites.

Chronologically going through a rich history from the Olmecs to the Spanish Conquest, expert in the field Mary Ellen Miller manages to present a concise and easily readable history of what can be, in other lesser books on the subject, an off-puttingly complex story. Neither is this book limited to art as many other facets of the various cultures are explored, from religion to agriculture, sacrifice to architecture.

Ultimately, though, it is the images that leave the most lasting impression - beautiful shots of museum art, aerial views of sites, and illustrations from the codexes - and they make this edition seem like a pocket-sized coffee table book. There is also a helpful chronological table along with a good index, bibliography, and list of illustrations. Thoroughly recommended and guaranteed to entice you into digging deeper into these fascinating cultures.

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