Aztec Art



Art in the Aztec empire, like its culture and religion, came from a long history - a history of many different tribes. Techniques and themes in ancient Aztec art were influenced by hundreds, perhaps thousands of years of artistry in this part of the world.

Azec Paintings Potery Music

Ancient Aztec art was primarily a form of religious expression and a means for paying tribute to their Aztec gods. In addition, various forms of Aztec art were used to assist in communication. These beautifully crafted designs are still admired today. Aztec art such as pictographs, paintings and warrior drawings can still be seen on the walls of their temples and within their ancient artifacts.

The Aztecs thought of craftsmanship and extraordinary work as something that was extremely valuable. The Aztecs viewed the creations of art as outlets that helped express their opinions - their doubts and their joys - about the human condition. Art, whether it is in the form of poetry, murals, music or paintings, was a fundamental element of life in the era of the Aztecs as well as the in the world today.

Religion did not have a clear explanation on the meaning of life, thus art allowed for an exploration of these thoughts on life. Gods and sacrificial victims were often represented by stone statues. Paintings on both paper and on walls (murals) represented gods and religious ceremonies.

Azec Clothing Accessories

There was a rich variety of art in the empire. Richly coloured clothing, architecture, ceremonial knives, head dresses - many things were adorned with jewels and feathers. It is said that the emperor never wore the same clothes twice. His head piece that supposedly belonged to Emperor Montezuma II is a splash of bright green feathers, embroidered with gold and blue. Noble families had ear pieces, bracelets and necklaces.

Stories were commonly written in pictures, giving more opportunity for art. The pictographs may show the most recent conquest, or the sacrifices of the priests, or even daily life.

Statues made of stone, as well as Aztec masks, pottery, shields, knives, carved pillars and painted walls. Art could be made with gold, silver, copper, jewels, feathers, coral, clay and stone, to name a few. As mentioned before, many of materials were not native to the region, but had to be bartered for.

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