Nadín Ospina (1960 - )

Chac Mool

height: 33cm
width: 40cm

Donated by Nadín Ospina 2003


Like Idolo con Muñeca, this stone carving reflects on the exchange between two cultures as represented by two figures: in this case the Chac Mool and Disney's Mickey Mouse, representing ancient indigenous culture and the newly invasive mass-media respectively.
The Chac Mool, a ceremonial reclining stone figure found in Maya and Aztec pyramids, is one of the most sacred and also most easily recognisable figures of pre-Columbian culture. In the coming together of these two figures as a hybrid character, Mickey not only lends his popularity to the pre-Columbian figure; it is a reciprocal exchange wherein the Chac Mool also endows Mickey with an aura of the sacred. This hybrid figure is ostensibly 'fake' but, as a representation of cultural relations between North America and Latin America, it is an authentic icon. Within contemporary dynamics the only common cultural place is the point of exchange and translation that this idol embodies; and it is no coincidence that the artist has chosen a figure that was believed to dwell at the four cardinal points. In other words, like the mass media Chac Mool is an omnipresent idol; ideal for a culture that is at once everywhere and nowhere.

Maria Clara Bernal

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