Site-seeing: Aeriality, Archaeological Survey and Objectivity in Coastal Peru

Author(s): Parker VanValkenburgh

Year: 2017


Far from being mana from the future, aerial imagery has been integral to both the practical and conceptual dimensions of archaeological survey almost from its inception. In this presentation, I argue that aerial photography captured via private and state-funded reconnaissance in the 1930’s and 40’s played a transformational role in the emergence of regional approaches in Peru’s desert coast in the mid 20th century. I discuss how the use of aerial imagery has both enabled and constrained the interpretation of archaeological phenomena and participated in the construction of the objects of archaeological survey – sites, artifacts, and landscapes. I then consider how more recently available products – high resolution, multi-spectral satellite imagery, UAV photography and near-surface remote sensing – participate in the same processes.

Cite this Record

Site-seeing: Aeriality, Archaeological Survey and Objectivity in Coastal Peru. Parker VanValkenburgh. Presented at The 81st Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Vancouver, British Columbia. 2017 ( tDAR id: 431322)


Spatial Coverage

min long: -93.691; min lat: -56.945 ; max long: -31.113; max lat: 18.48 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 15048