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Timelines of World Art: Americas (Native North America, USA, Latin America & Caribbean, Pre-Columbian)

c. 300 BC–AD 400

Potters at La Tolita on Ecuador's coast make large numbers of mould-produced figurines of gods, imaginary beings and humans engaged in a wide variety of daily activities. Read more...

c. 200 BC–c. AD 200

Pre-Columbian mummies of the Paracas culture are buried in tombs in the Central Andes swaddled in layers of embroidered textiles filled with colourful abstracted images of birds, felines and serpents. Read more...

AD 1–AD 150

The Pyramid of the Sun, along with its smaller and later companion the Pyramid of the Moon, dominates Teotihuacán's extensive programme of monumental architecture and is the largest building ever made in Mesoamerica. Read more...

AD 1–AD 400

The Hopewell people construct numerous mounds at a site in Ohio. These graves contain a variety of burial goods and ceremonial objects, many of which include materials traded from other regions. Read more...

c. AD 50

A powerful ruler of the Moche civilization in Peru is buried near Sipán with a rich assortment of gold and silver jewellery and ornaments that remained intact until the tomb was excavated in 1987. Read more...

c. AD 300–c. AD 500

The Zapotec people of Monte Albán achieve their highest levels in ceramic production, producing finely grained grey wares that are engraved and incised. Funerary urns are among the finest pieces made. Read more...

c. AD 450

Scenes of battles between men and anthropomorphic weapons are painted on the walls of the pyramid Huaca de La Luna at Moche in Peru, reflecting the political and religious concerns of the society's élite. Read more...

c. AD 600–c. AD 900

Mesoamerican rulers build a monumental city at Tikal, Guatemala as their capital. This city's paved Great Plaza is flanked by an acropolis that serves as the royal cemetery, another acropolis for rulers and several temple-pyramids for important ritual ceremonies and funerary functions. Read more...

AD 615–AD 684

At the Mayan ceremonial site of Palenque in Mexico, the ruler Pacal builds the Temple of the Inscriptions, which derives its name from the hieroglyphs inscribed on panels that decorate the interior. Pacal's tomb is contained in this temple. Read more...

c. AD 700–c. 1050

Potters in the Mimbres area of the American Southwest begin decorating wares with black designs painted on white surfaces, a technique that continues for more than three centuries. Read more...

c. AD 790

The Mayan ceremonial centre of Bonampak in Mexico contains the most complete cycle of Pre-Columbian wall paintings in the region. These colourful paintings on stucco present complex scenes of political events, ceremonies and battles. Read more...


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