Avarice by Fernando Mastrangelo at Brooklyn Museum

I just sat down in front of this circular tablet sculpture “Avarice” for more than an hour and looked at every detail to understand what its artist (Fernando Mastrangelo) wanted to show. It attracted me first because the sculpture reminded me of the Aztec Calendar Stone, which symbolizes the creation of the Aztec universe, mythological representations of the dates the Earth was previously destroyed (five eras), the Sun God, and cosmology.

However, Mastrangelo’s sculpture fills the tablet with the Sun God-Tonatiuh as a center of the tablet and contemporary consumer products such as pharmaceuticals, soft drinks, candy, spark plugs, and toothpaste (made me smile). Corn products draw attention to Mexico’s mass cultivation of corn to meet energy needs (via ethanol) and foreign consumer demands. Massive tablet sculpture is made out of white corn, white and yellow cornmeal, epoxy, fiberglass, wood, and metal.

Mastrangelo’s art inspired me to learn more about the early origins of maize in Mexico and to get to know more about the most famous of Aztec monuments.

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