Carmen Reategui

Visual Artist

Illapa – Los maíces de Santiago

“The image is the reading of the illiterate”
Gregorio el Grande VI.

Conquest, Viceroyalty, Independence

The veneration and acceptance of the cult of Santiago Mata Moros (Matain Indians); in viceroyalty iconography, it responds to the syncretism of thunder, lightning, lightning, in a single Quechua word: Illapa.

Illapa was one of the most popular gods in Inca cosmology; able to make it rain, hail and thunder with the help of his slingshot that represented thunder, the stone contained lightning and lightning was the radiance of his garments.

The Conquest was given to the cry of Santiago. With the noise of the shots, the Indians saw the armies of the Spanish crown attacking them; to the God Illapa. Being the justification of it the evangelization. Thus the souls of the natives could be redeemed. Faith and imagery (Santiago), at the service of the conquest.

Gold was the object of desire during the conquest stage. Establishing during the viceroyalty an unequal exchange of wealth.

Independence by giving the hierarchy to corn on the baroque basis; therefore, empowerment of corn over the European sumptuary element; which is how our culture is reconstructed. A new heraldry that confirms our value.

Golden corn and purple corn; corn seen as a flame/sword, the sword of Santiago; that of the Santiago Mataindios. A large chandelier, a spearhead, swords lined up in formation, like votive flames, lightning?

32 golden and purple corns on baroque resin pedestals.

Installation view
Installation view

“… he appeared visibly in front of the Spaniards,
And they did see him,
And the Indians, on top of a beautiful white horse,
Embracing an avalanche and in it, its badge of the military order,
And in his right hand a sword, which seemed to be lightning,
According to the glow emanating from it.

The Indians were scared to death from seeing the new knight,
And where asking each other:
Who is that Viracocha,
That carries the Illapa in his hand?

Wherever the saint attacked,
The infidels ran away as if lost,
And blundering, tried to drown each other,
Running away from that marvel.

As soon as the Indians attacked the faithful,
Through the part where the Saint was not,
Just as soon they found him in front of them, and fled from him disorderly,
With which the Spaniards struggled and got back in the fight,
And they killed a large number of enemies, without them being able to defend themselves,
And the Indians cowered in such a way that
They fled as best they could, abandoning the fight.

Thus the apostle helped the Christians that day,
Taking away the victory,
Which the infidels already had in their hands,
And giving it to his people.
He did the same thing the following day,
And all the other days in which the Indians wanted to fight:
And when they advanced against the Christians, they were stunned,
And did not know where to go, and they returned to their posts…”

Inca Garcilaso de la Vega
Historia general del Perú
1607

16 Maize moulded on resin, gold plated 14K

16 Maize moulded on resin and acrilic paint

Installation view
ArtLima I/K Projects 2016

Maize moulded on resin, gold plated 14K
Resin bases

Maize moulded on resin, gold plated 14K
Resin bases

Maize moulded on resin, gold plated 14K
Resin bases