I had the good fortune to visit the the ancient Mayan city of Uxmal last February. Excaping the craziness of Mazatlan’s Carnaval was a prime motivation, but landing in the Yucatan wasn’t a bad choice. Uxmal is located outside the city of Merida, Mexico and doesn’t get near the number of visitors that Chichen Itza receives each day, 2000 vs 20,000 I was told. (I had visited Chichen Itza many years before.) Plus, the day we visited it was overcast and rainy which also kept the numbers down and so a very pleasant experience.
Walking the site was a visual delight. My eyes filled with this ancient architecture, my feet following in the footsteps of the ancestors. I crept inside a hidden space and sat for a moment, alone, soaking up the silence, overcome by the spirit of place. I was particularly drawn to the stone carvings, the circles, spirals, etc., the same universal symbols found in ancient sites around the world. Looking through an artist’s eyes, I relish the forms and shapes, the details. This is what makes an ancient civilization come alive for me.
Some say Uxmal dates to around 6th century AD, others claim it is much older. I’m not much for retaining the history, remembering the names of kings, who ruled when, etc. so if you would like to learn more, you can visit this site: ancient-origins.net
Back in my Mazatlan studio, I play around with the shapes, creating a series of small 7″ x 5″ monotypes (one of a kind prints) – Uxmal I, II, & III. I layer texture and color to achieve the look of an aged document. As an artist, I am open to letting things happen on the plate, synchronicity in the studio, stacking the glyphs, letting them order themselves, and in this case, pairing them with a vertical column.
Contact me if you are interested in my work or process. www.glenrogersart.com