Mesoamerica Center

Highlighted News and Events

Dr. Julia Guernsey wins Outstanding Teaching Award

Dr. Julia Guernsey

Julia Guernsey. Photo Credit B.Nowlin

The Mesoamerica Center congratulates Dr. Julia Guernsey, affiliated faculty of our center, for the Outstanding Teaching Award.

The awards program is one of the nation’s largest monetary teaching recognition programs in higher education, honoring outstanding performance in the classroom and dedication to innovation in undergraduate instruction.

Study Abroad: Spring Semester in Guatemala and Belize

 


San Pedro las Huertas

This spring, The Mesoamerica Center brought students to Casa Herrera for their study abroad semester for the third year. This satellite campus provides a teaching and research center in the colonial city of Antigua, Guatemala.

The study abroad program is open to all majors and focuses on ancient and contemporary culture in Guatemala and Belize, giving students a fully immersive and interactive experience at ancient Maya sites, national and local museums, archaeological laboratories, and contemporary Maya villages.

The Mesoamerica Center faculty lead for the program, Dr. Astrid Runggaldier, teaches courses in Antigua and oversees the curriculum, field trips, invited speakers, and special projects.

 

From the Archives


 

In 1978, this 56-page booklet, the original “notebook” for the Maya Hieroglyphic Writing Workshop at Texas, was handed out to all participants and contained Linda Schele’s detailed transcriptions of selected hieroglyphic tablets from Palenque, Mexico.

This initial gathering, held over a chilly spring break in Austin, was the distant ancestor of the current Maya Meetings and has been held annually ever since. 

 

 

Director's Letter Summer 2014


 

Dear Friends,

I hope you will take a little time to read about some of the many exciting developments in Mesoamerican research now happening at The University of Texas at Austin. 

Among many other activities, The Mesoamerica Center, housed in the Department of Art and Art History, oversees the planning and operation of two major undertakings: The Maya Meetings and Casa Herrera.

The annual Maya Meetings, now in its 37th year, brings scholars, students, and all types of interested people together to share the latest discoveries in Maya art, archaeology, and decipherment (back in 1978 it was called the “Maya Hieroglyphic Writing Workshop” –see From the Archives). It remains one of the preeminent conferences in Maya studies, and our next meeting will take place in January, here in Austin. We will focus on the theme of sacrifice and ritual and keep you updated on The 2015 Maya Meetings website.


Casa Herrera, our beautiful research and learning center in Antigua, Guatemala, is home to a number of academic programs, seminars, lectures and residential scholars. Casa Herrera will continue to play a key role in forging communication and dialogue between the researchers in Central America and Texas, especially in these times when in-person connections and understanding are so vitally important.

Alumni Lucia Henderson receives MET Fellowship


 
Lucia Henderson has received the Sylvan C. Coleman and Pamela Coleman Memorial Fund Fellowship at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. Dr. Henderson will be conducting focused research on the museum’s Maya collection, which is housed in the Department of Arts of Africa, Oceania, and the Americas. 

Lucia Henderson received her Ph.D from the University of Texas at Austin in 2013. Her dissertation provides the first illustrated catalog and comprehensive analysis of the sculptures of the Late Preclassic Maya site of Kaminaljuyú, Guatemala. Lucia holds an MA in art history from UC San Diego, a BA in anthropology from Harvard University, and is a trained archaeological illustrator. Lucia has published on a diverse range of topics, cultures, and time periods, from stone sculpture to cave art, hydraulic systems, and volcano imagery, and from the Late Preclassic Maya to the Postclassic Aztecs and the American Southwest.

 

Doctoral Candidate awarded a Fellowship at Dumbarton Oaks

Caitlin Earley, doctoral candidate in the Department of Art and Art History, was awarded a Junior Fellowship from Dumbarton Oaks. Dumbarton Oaks is a research institute of Harvard University dedicated to supporting research in Pre-Columbian Studies as well as Byzantine Studies and Garden and Landscape Studies. Junior Fellowships are awarded to PhD candidates for one academic year of residential study in Washington, DC, giving them the opportunity to pursue research amongst the rich academic resources and dynamic scholarly community of Dumbarton Oaks.

Summer Study Abroad 2014


Summer Study Abroad 2014

Casa Herrera greeted 19 undergraduates from various disciplines across The University of Texas at Austin campus to participate in a 6-week program called Culture, Education, and Diversity. During this program, students received classes at Casa Herrera led by Dr. Noah De Lissovoy from the Department of Curriculum and Instruction at the College of Education at UT Austin.

Casa Herrera Residents


Dr. Lucía Henderson

What a full summer has been at Casa Herrera! The center welcomed a number of residents specializing in Maya linguistics and archaeology.

IHOPE-MAYA Workshop

IHOPE ( Integrated History and Future of People on Earth) is a global network of researchers and research projects using integrative frameworks to combine study human and Earth system history on behalf of our species’ future. IHOPE’s long-term, human-scale perspective unites Earth system science with the social sciences, the humanities, and communities of practice. The IHOPE project office is hosted by Uppsala University in Sweden.

Remote tunnel exploration beneath Temple of the Feathered Serpent

Photo of tunnel

Some recent reporting on robots and archaeological exploration at Teotihuacan:

Lienzo de Quauhquechollan Exhibition

Lienzo de Quauhquecholla

The Mesoamerica Center is proud to present 
The Lienzo de Quauhquechollan Exhibition.

The Lienzo de Quauhquechollan is a pictographic painting on cotton cloth, created circa 1530. The Lienzo is considered the first map of Guatemala.

The Lienzo is also the only firsthand indigenous account of the conquest of Guatemala, and one of the few sources to record the military campaigns of Jorge de Alvarado in 1527–1530. The exhibit of the Lienzo de Quauhquechollan brings to life this untold story of Guatemala's conquest. 

The exhibition coincides with the 2013 Maya Meetings and will be on display until March 2013.

Major Discovery: Tomb of Lady K'abel

The burial chambers of Lady K'abel have been discovered at the site of El Perú-Waka' beneath the staircase leading to the summit of Structure M13-1.

Major Discovery: Cueva Rey Condoy

A recently discovered cave in the Oaxaca Valley contains several new and exciting examples of Zapotec visual culture, including wonderful over-life-size mud sculptures of human and supernatural figures, rock paintings, and lithics.

Research Reports on Ancient Maya Writing

The Research Reports on Ancient Maya Writing issues number 61, 62, and 63 are now available for download at the University of Texas Digital Repository!

Texas Notes @ the UT Digital Repository

Texas Notes logo

All available entries in the Texas Notes on Precolumbian Art series are now online and available for download at the University of Texas Digital Repository.

Apocalypse later

Image of cover book The Order of Days

Dr. David Stuart is feature on The Boston Globe. Dr. Stuart demystifies the 2012 phenomenon in a very interesting Q&A.