#Hierarchy

The “Moche Animal Effigies” exhibit utilized material curation to underscore the animal food chain and it’s correlation in shamanic trances. The accompanying text alludes to a more fluid relationship between existing as a human and as an animal, especially when in a trance. Not only do you often assume a certain animal role when in a trance, but also this seems to transform or progress as you expand your spiritual awareness. For example, carnivorous birds are associated with warriors, which are seen as the highest ranking in Moche culture. The physical arrangement is meant to mirror how these trance manifestations are classified in terms of status. Furthermore, it is also meant to depict the area of the ecosystem that each animal occupies. This is also why the birds are the most elevated, followed by the monkey, and then different cats. Within the cats, pumas are usually associated with the highlands, which explains their raised portrayal within the land animals. Knowledge is produced primarily for me through the text, but also from the presentation, meant to manipulate our implicit thoughts regarding the animal kingdom, hierarchy, and how it pertains to spiritual ranking in the Moche. The role of social media, at least as far as I could see, was that visitors could take pictures of the exhibits. From there, they have the freedom to do share it as they please. It takes away the privilege that accompanies museums and art, and takes a piece previously only viewable in Atlanta, GA and makes it open online. Though I didn’t see it specifically in the Carlos Museum, I know many others use social media as a means to create a more immersive and relatable experience as you travel through time.

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