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David Stuart to deliver keynote at Witte Museum Maya Exhibit 

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I just returned from Copan, Honduras and a great Maya Field Workshop conducted by Dr. David Stuart. David will be the keynote speaker of the 5th Annual Witte Museum in San Antonio on April 12, 2016 according to Witte President Marise McDermott.

The event marks Dr. Stuart’s first appearance at the Witte, during which he intends to share his insights about the translation and interpretation of Mayan hieroglyphic writing. The event takes place in the museum’s new Mays Family Center for exhibitions and special events and builds further excitement for the premiere of the center’s first exhibition: Maya: Hidden Worlds Revealed.

Dr. Stuart, who is now a professor of Mesoamerican Art at the University of Texas at Austin, began deciphering Mayan hieroglyphs at the age of 10, and delivered his first scholarly paper on Mayan glyphs at the age of 12. At age 18, Stuart became the youngest person to ever receive a MacArthur Fellowship, popularly known as the “Genius Award,” to further his groundbreaking studies into cracking the Maya code.

 

For tickets, visit www.wittemuseum.org/MayaSA

 

Textile Museum is “must see” in Antigua

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Maya Field Workshops Report #3 –

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Excellent demonstration of Maya backstrap textile weaving at Museo Casa del Tijido, managed by indigenous Maya in Antigua.

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Expert weaver, Adelita gives a hug to Vicki who just bought an awesome bedspread textile along with pillows.

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Armead “Chinky” Johnson asks the textile museum curator to explain the unique types of looms on display at the Museo Casa del Tijido.

El Fuego Volcano Blows Smoke Ring

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Maya Field Workshop – Report #2 

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Nine miles to the west of Antigua, “Fuego” is famous for being almost constantly active at a low level. That’s Fuego on the left with an eruption in progress rising and Acatenango on the right.  This was shot from the rooftop garden of our hotel, El Meson de Antigua.

Maya Field Workshop begins in Antigua

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Report #1 – Vicki and I have arrived in Antigua, Guatemala at the beginning of our awesome journey to the iconic Maya sites of Copan, Honduras and Quirigua, Guatemala. Many of our Mayanists friends are here and enjoying the beauty of Antigua before trekking to Honduras. Ann Stuart and brother, David Stuart are here as our hosts for the Maya Field Workshops. I’ll be posting pix and video between now and March 20.

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Susan Dutcher and Erica Raven greet us in Antigua’s Parque Central.

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John and Vicki at La Fonda Restaurant for postre and espresso. Thanks to Susan Dutcher for the pix.

Maya Culture, featured at Friendship Bridge meeting in Evergreen, CO Jan. 19

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Friendship Bridge – Evergreen Circle
Tuesday, January 19, 2016 at 6:30pm
Evergreen Church of the Transfiguration

(Douglas Hall on the east end of downtown Evergreen)
R.S.V.P. to John Daigle, mayaglypher@gmail.com

During our travels to Tikal and Yaxha in Guatemala last year, my wife Vicki and I were honored to receive a very special wedding blessing from a Maya shaman (J’Men).

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It was conducted by highly respected Reginaldo Chayax Huex, director of BioItzá a protected biosphere headquartered in San Jose on Lake Peten Itzá. He is one of fewer than 60 remaining persons who are fluent in the Itzá dialect of the Mayan language.

Many of our Evergreen, Colorado friends and neighbors have asked us to share our knowledge of both the ancient and present-day Maya culture. Over the past 40 years, we have collected quite a bit of information in our travels to Guatemala (Tikal, Yaxha, etc.) and Mexico (Palenque, Yaxchilan, Coba, etc.)

So we’ll be showing video clips of our exploits and pass along information I’ve accumulated while attending Maya Field Workshops with David Stuart and “auditing” classes with the legendary Linda Schele at the University of Texas at Austin.

Among our topics:

  • Our background and interest in the Maya culture (both ancient and contemporary). This will include a 5 to 10 minute video clips of our travels to iconic Maya sites of Tikal, Yaxha and Uaxactun, Aguateca, Palenque and Yaxchilan as well as present day Flores and the Lake Peten area.
  • A short clip of our “wedding blessing ceremony” conducted by Reginaldo Chayax Huex and his son, Aderito Chayax
  • Ancient Maya art (sculpture, ceramics and textiles) and how they can be seen in present-day art and textiles.
  • Mayan hieroglyphs, how they can be read and their relation to present-day Mayan languages.
  • How the accomplishments of the ancient Maya ancestors can be shared with the present-day descendants as a point of pride and inspiration.

Of course present day Maya face incredible economic and political challenges. So to some, a study of their ancient past may seem frivolous. Hopefully we offer some insights into how the ancient heritage can inspire a successful future.

We appreciate the invitation of Friendship Bridge to speak at Evergreen Circle. They work with indigenous Maya women where the rate of poverty in Guatemala is highest. Among other important goals, they assist with a successful microcredit program to foster:

  • A greater ability to weather economic shocks, such as illness or natural disaster
  • Decreased malnutrition
  • Decreased spousal abuse
  • Improved hygiene and health care
  • Increased number of children attending school, especially girls

Please visit the Friendship Bridge and Facebook pages to learn more.

Off to Austin and the 2016 Maya Meetings Jan 13-16

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If you are going to the Maya Meetings next week, drop me a line. Vicki and I would love to see all our Maya Field Workshop buddies! I’ll be there for the workshops on Wednesday and Thursday as well as the Symposium. There’s another great lineup for this year’s Maya Meetings at the University of Texas at Austin. I’ve been going for many years since my first one in 1984. Here are some of the featured topics and speakers. You can still register here. (The glyph you see, is the Dos Pilas toponym or place name.)

 

 

Friday, January 15
Welcome Remarks
David Stuart

The 1960s Peabody–Harvard Project at Ceibal: An Overview of its Background, Goals and Achievements
Jeremy Sabloff

The Development of Political Complexity in the Maya Lowlands: New Insights from Preclassic Ceibal
Daniela Triadan

Classic Maya Commoners in the Petexbatun Region
Markus Eberl

King of the Hill: Demography, Dynasty and Diplomacy in the Northwestern Maya Mountains
Nicholas Carter

Yopaat, a Maya Storm God and its Relation to the Jaguar
Maria Eugenia Gutierrez

The (Re)invention of Incompletive Aspect in Cholan
Daniel Law

The Environmental Backdrop of the Petexbatun and Beyond
Tim Beach

Ceibal in Historical Context
David Stuart

Saturday Jan 16
The Political History of Classic-Period Ceibal
Takeshi Inomata

Setting the Stage for Kingship: Domestic and Public Rituals at Preclassic Ceibal
Jessica McLellan and Melissa Burham

God L: An Obsidian Merchant Deity
Karen Bassie

The Three Throne-Stones of Creation: San Bartólo Revisited
Ruud Van Akkeren

The Crown Was Held Above Him: Revisiting a Classic Maya Coronation Ceremony
Marc Zender

Architectural Framing in the Northern Maya Lowlands
Maline Werness–Rude and Kaylee Spencer

January 16
The Political History of Classic-Period Ceibal
Takeshi Inomata

Setting the Stage for Kingship: Domestic and Public Rituals at Preclassic Ceibal
Jessica McLellan and Melissa Burham

God L: An Obsidian Merchant Deity
Karen Bassie

The Three Throne-Stones of Creation: San Bartólo Revisited
Ruud Van Akkeren

The Crown Was Held Above Him: Revisiting a Classic Maya Coronation Ceremony
Marc Zender

Architectural Framing in the Northern Maya Lowlands
Maline Werness–Rude and Kaylee Spencer

Voices of the Vassals: Comparing the Rhetoric, History and Politics of La Corona and Dos Pilas
Marcello Canuto

New Evidence on Petexbatun and Pasión River Eighth-Century Economic and Political Change: Breakthroughs on the Mystery of the Collapse of Classic Maya Civilization
Arthur Demarest

 

Opportunity for this December’s Maya Field Workshop

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Breaking: I understand there was a cancellation and one or two spaces may be available for the Yucatan December MFW. This is an awesome opportunity to learn about archaeology and hieroglyphs in the Puuc region of Yucatan, Mexico. For details see post below and visit theMaya Field Workshops, led byDr. David Stuart, this coming December 5 to 13.

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