Tunic (striped green, black, yellow and red)
Nazca culture, c.200 AD
Woven, Camelid fibres, 134 x 202 cm
This stunning and monumental example of bold Huari textile aesthetics exemplifies this culture’s technical virtuosity in expressing abstractly the beliefs that man has the power to create order, transcend space and time in a nonrepresentative colour field of geometrics. For, surely accustomed as we are with our late XXth century modes of perception freed from representational conventions, the visual impact of this cloth and those of the following group cannot fail to resonate with the archetypal heritage of abstraction inherent within us all.
Although it measures less than 2 meters wide, this work manages to achieve a remarkable sense of dynamism within a relatively compact space due to the wavy weaving lines and contrasting use of colour. It brings to mind the Colour Field painter Morris Louis early works from the 1960s.