Pre-Columbian Society of Washington DC

The Pre-Columbian Society of Washington, D.C. (PCSWDC), is an educational organization dedicated to furthering knowledge and understanding of the peoples of the Americas before the time of Columbus. Founded in 1993, the Society provides a forum for the exchange of information regarding these pre-Columbian cultures between academic professionals and interested members of the public.

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Cajamarca Iconography: Anthropomorphic and Zoomorphic Figures from Ancient Peru, Jeanette Nicewinter, PhD, American University

This meeting will be held at the Charles Sumner School, 17th & M Streets, N.W., Washington, D.C.

The meeting starts with refreshments at 6:45 pm and the lecture begins at 7:15 pm.


The intricately painted iconography of the Cajamarca culture depicts human and animal figures in conjunction with geometric patterns. This horror vacui, or fear of empty space painting style has earned the Cajamarca culture a designation as anomalous within the aesthetic styles of the Central Andes. However, the iconography on Cajamarca fineware plates, bowls, and spoons depicts well-known Andean images. An identification and interpretation of these figures leads to a greater understanding of the Cajamarca culture within the sociocultural context of the Middle Horizon.


Jeanette Nicewinter is a specialist in Andean art with a focus on the Cajamarca culture of the north highlands. Her research addresses the ceramic forms and iconography of the Cajamarca culture with regard to the expression of social and cultural identity. Her dissertation, Cajamarca Ceramic Spoons from Northern Peru: Forming a Symbolic Function, analyzed the distribution of small-scale ceramic spoons from the Cajamarca and Wari cultures as a form of cultural and aesthetic overlap. She currently teaches Art History at American University and Northern Virginia Community College.

Earlier Event: September 7
Later Event: December 7

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