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T. Mask of a God Weeping. B. Rain God.

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T. Mask of a God Weeping. B. Rain God.
4th-7th c T. Pre-Columbian: Andean B. Mesoamerican Tiwanaku (Early Intermediate) Applied Arts

TEOTIHUACAN Anonymous (Early Classic c. 1 - 600) (c. 1 - 600) Primary
TEOTIHUACAN Anonymous (Early Classic c. 1 - 600) (c. 1 - 600)
4th-7th c
Tiwanaku (Early Intermediate)
T. Titicaca Region. Bolivia. B. Teotihuacan. Mexico
T. La Paz. Museo de Metales Preciosos Pre-Columbinos. B. San Francisco. Fine Ar
No one to my knowledge has argued for contact between Tiahuanaco and Teotihuacan, but the similarity of style between the large monolithic figures, makes one pause to reflect, particularly when one adds the iconography of this enigmatic golden "weeping god" from Tiahuanaco with the mural fragment of the Rain God from Teotihuacan illustrated below. In both cases the square mask of the face is surrounded projecting forms, and both seem to have utilized the idea of water drops, which in the upper figure come from the eyes where they come from the entire mask in the fresco. The fresco shows a projecting forked tongue and jaguar claws which are missing in the gold mask. However, both jaguars and snakes project from the mask. Such similarities raise many questions. We could argue that since both groups preferred formalized squared off styles, and that both needed rain for their crops, they might come up with similar depicts with no contact. One can also argue that missionaries may have made the trek from one place to the other, and it would have been a very long and difficult journey, or one can argue that traders may have transported an object like the mask, which influenced the artists of Tiahuanaco. We do not know the name of the water god from Teotihuacan, but a similar one with a long nose and projecting teeth was called Tlaloc by the Aztecs. The art historian Michael Covarrubias traced the evolution of the Tlaloc mask from Teotihuacan to Maya and then to the Aztecs.

Caption: TIWANAKU | T. Mask of a God Weeping. B. Rain God.| 300-600 | Pre-Columbian: Andean | Tiwanaku Early Intermediate/Middle Horizon
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