In the continuing motif of colonizing nations taking credit for Indigenous discoveries, titanium dioxide — a chemical compound that produces a commonly used bright white pigment— has long been attributed to its development in 1908 at a lab in Niagara Falls, New York. But in 2018, researchers discovered evidence of the pigment, which has become omnipresent in products and goods of all kinds, in Andean qeros, meaning that the pigment was developed for use in this Inca ceremonial wooden cup some 400 years ago.
“The temporal horizon for the use of this pigment appears to be ca. 1532–1570, correlating with what we refer to here as the Transitional Inka/Early Colonial period, although production of polychromed qeros may have begun before this time and certainly continued well into the eighteenth century or later,” write co-authors Ellen Howe, Emily Kaplan, Richard Newman, James H. Frantz, Ellen Pearlstein, Judith Levinson, and Odile Madden, in their article for Heritage Science.
Though qeros were produced by the Inca for a millenia, they did not begin to feature chromatic elements until roughly 1530 — but that still places the discovery of titanium white centuries ahead of its formal introduction to the Western world. As X-ray and spectroscopy are generating all kinds of breakthroughs in the study of ancient technologies, anthropologists continue to expand their understanding of the true origins and extent of breakthroughs once firmly Euro-centric in their attribution.
Al-Hadid’s new mosaic features the famed clock that hung at the entrance of the original station until the building was demolished in the 1960s.
The excavation project also yielded Old Kingdom-era amulets, stoneware, and daily-use tools.
Join the New-York Historical Society on February 10 for a virtual conversation about our changing relationship to the natural world with Julie Decker, John Grade, and LaMont Hamilton.
The steel spike clad in gold and silver commemorated the completion of the Transcontinental Railroad in 1869.
Thanks to a $3.3 million grant from the state’s Creative Corps, artists can now apply to bring the project to their neighborhood.
Your list of must-see, fun, insightful, and very Los Angeles art events this month, including Alicia Piller, Brad Phillips, Mulyana, the MexiCali Biennial, and more.
Her solo exhibition at the Los Angeles institution demonstrates how natural light can turn an overlooked, everyday setting into a sublime landscape.
Presented by Northwestern’s Block Museum and McCormick School of Engineering, this new exhibition seeks empathy at the boundaries of life. On view in Evanston, Illinois.
Nicola López and Paula Wilson’s exhibition Becoming Land considers anthropocentric relationships with New Mexico’s desert landscapes.
A festival dedicated to Davinci’s The King Show celebrates the LA artist’s trippy remixing of stock footage, Hollywood cinema, and theater.
Located in Des Moines, Iowa, this residency for emerging and established artists includes studio and living space, a $1,000 monthly stipend, and more.
20th Century Indian Art: Modern, Post-Independence, Contemporary surveys the many distinct aspects of art in South Asia.
Moving too fast on your commute, looking out of the corner of your eye one second too late, and you might miss HOTTEA’s yarn installations.