Lima Street Art
 

Lima Street Art

The city of Stockholm has a fairly simple but rigid policy against street art: There is no such thing. If someone were to paint something on a wall, then it is not art - it is vandalism - and shortly thereafter the city will, by means of high-pressure wash - ensure that it is nothing at all. Therefore Stockholm is mostly devoid of street art, unless you go look in the places where nobody looks.

Lima, either for policy reasons, or other priorities, is different. Not only did I see lots of street art - it was of a much higher quality and with greater variation in style than the Stockholm art I've seen.

Pachamama written on a wall.

The "Pacha Mamma" mentioned at the bottom is Pachamama, the life-giving all-mother that appears in many South American belief systems; in which she is a counterpoint to the "Creator God". When the Catholics came, this setup was mapped onto the Virgin Mary as Pachamama and the Christian God as the creator God. Already one can note the conspicuous absence of one Christian figure in this setup: Jesus. It was in fact quite surprising to me how big a part Mary plays in everyday faith in Peru. There are festivals to the Holy Virgin and she appears in many shapes in churches and cathedrals, often more prominently than Jesus. Perhaps this is the old goddess Pachamama elbowing others out of her way to stand, front and center, in a new shape, on the new stage afforded her by Christianity when the prominence given to her was, intentionally or unintentionally, transferred to Mary?

2011-12-31 13:02

Barranco, Lima, Miraflores, Peru 2011, Plaza San Martin, Street Art

Writing on a wall: Water, Yes - Mine, No

Not what I'd consider "great art", but the message here - "Water, Yes - Mine, No" - is a very current issue in Peru. It is about a prospected gold mine in northern Peru. The method of extraction used is cyanide leaching[a] - basically, the ground up rock is washed in cyanide which washes out the gold. This method comes with the risk of accidents and cyanide spills[b].

2011-12-31 13:05

Barranco, Lima, Miraflores, Peru 2011, Plaza San Martin, Street Art

[a]

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gold_cyanidation

[b]

http://www.rainforestinfo.org.au/gold/spills.htm