Three Prostrate forms
These three figures represent the blending
of the Spanish and Indian cultures. Many aspects of Mexican culture
are greatly influenced by both the native Indian cultures of the
Aztec, Maya, Toltec, and other groups as well as the Spanish conquistadors.
We can see these influences today in the language, art, and architecture
Spanish is the official language of Mexico,
but throughout the country you’ll find many different native dialects.
Investigators have identified at lease 139 lost Indian languages,
but of the 50 or more Indian cultures remaining in Mexico, some
have only a few hundred members remaining, living in rural zones
far from large urban populations.
Mexican culture is a rich mixture of the Indian
and Spanish cultures. The Indian influence comes from the Mayans,
Aztecs, and Toltecs, advanced cultures that left the architecturally
and artistically sophisticated ruins found throughout the country.
The Spanish left their mark on Mexico’s modern cities. (The famed
Museum of Natural History won world prizes for architecture.)
Painting was highly developed before the Spanish arrived. Europe
has enriched this tradition, and modern Mexico’s celebrated artists
such as Juan Cordero, Diego Rivera, and Frida Kahlo are known
Architecture of the ancient Indians, still
evident throughout Mexico and west Texas, was related chiefly
to religion. Many ancient structures still stand near Mexico City
and at Chichen Itza in Yucatan. After the Spanish conquest, the
earliest mission churches were designed in a simple style. Later
churches, especially those built during the 1700's, took on a
more ornamental style. During the 1900's, many Mexican architects
have combined ancient Indian designs with modern construction
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