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 Edition 2014








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 Art and Culture


The Native American heritage of Peru is one of the richest in South America. Although Spain gave Peru its language, religion, and rulers, the civilization of the Inca has left its traces throughout Peruvian culture. Archaeological excavations have uncovered monumental remains of Native American societies. Architecture of the Spanish colonial period, a fusion of Spanish and Native American forms, is called Creole. In art today, the indigenist school pointedly interprets 20th-century Peru in a Native American mode. See also Latin American Architecture; Latin American Literature; Latin American Music; Latin American Painting; Latin American Sculpture.The descendants of the Quechua and Aymará peoples populate the Andean highlands. Many do not speak Spanish and have preserved the customs and folklore of their ancestors. Along the coast and in the highland cities, the whites, mestizos, and blacks live in a modern Western style. In contrast to these settlements are the jungles of eastern Peru, where more isolated groups of Native Americans retain lifestyles similar to those of their ancestors. 

What to bring on your trip to Peru in this Peru Weather Guide

Art and Architecture
Native American themes are strong in painting. During the colonial period the Cuzco school was famous throughout Spanish America for its religious canvases. During the 19th century there were four major artists—Francisco Lazo, forerunner of the indigenous school of painting and a portrait painter; Luis Montero, known for his huge canvas Atahualpa's Funeral (1867); Pancho Fierro, a caricaturist of popular social types and customs; and Carlos Becaflor, a portrait painter.In the 1930s, following the lead of the great Mexican muralists, a Peruvian movement—led by José Sabogal and Julia Codesido—reflected deep sympathy for the indigenous Peruvian people. Later, a reaction against the use of native themes took place. In the 1950s abstract painting became dominant. The Institute of Contemporary Art encourages new movements in art, while the long-established National School of Fine Arts is more conservative.In addition to the many monumental Inca ruins, many examples of colonial architecture survive, particularly religious and public buildings located mostly in Lima, Arequipa, Cuzco, and Trujillo. In the Andean area the Spaniards often built on top of Inca remains, and in Cuzco one can see both types of construction. In colonial buildings, Spanish and indigenous modes often fuse, blending into what was called the Creole style. Moorish influence, which traveled from Arab North Africa to Spain and then to the Americas, is visible in what is known as the Mudejar style. Lima has many examples of fine modern architecture. 

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