Art History

Back to Blog April 11, 2018

Bradley Cavallo (PhD Art History 2017) presents at 2018 Midwestern Art History Society

Author: Jane DeRose Evans

Bradley Cavallo (PhD 2017) recently presented research at the 2018 Midwestern Art History Society in Indianapolis.  In the presentation, "Skeuomorphism as Hermeneutic: From Obsidian Mirrors to Copper Escudos de Monjas", Cavallo argued that  "Nuns' Shields" in early-modern Mexico could be understtod as a colonial skeumorphs derived from the Mesoamerican ritual wearing of oval obsidian discs to signal the presence of Aztec divinities. Escudos mimicked the stone artifacts in metal form and religious function in order to make the presence of the Christian divine - painted on escudos as the Virgin Mary of the Immaculate Conception - comprehensibely analogous to the way in which some pre-Columbian divinities had been traditionally experienced.