Bonampak Will Never Be Finished: Some Remarks in Honor of Steve Houston

Author(s): Mary Miller

Year: 2019


This is an abstract from the "Decipherment, Digs, and Discourse: Honoring Stephen Houston's Contributions to Maya Archaeology" session, at the 84th annual meeting of the Society for American Archaeology.

One might think that the 2013 publication of Miller and Brittenham on Bonampak would have closed discussion of these paintings for a few years. But the complexity and richness of the subject continues to yield both details and to add to the big picture of the three-room program of late 8th century Maya paintings in ways that extend the work of both that book and of the work of Stephen Houston, who has published extensively on the subject for over thirty years. For example, through additional review of the battle in Room 2, it is now possible to see that the battle scene in Room 2 encompasses a stepped pyramid, previously unrecognized, large enough to be a dominant visual feature but represented at a scale with respect to human actors that is more diminished than the depiction of the pyramid—and its dramatic dancers—in Room 3. Additionally, the continuing scientific work on Maya pigments makes it possible to speculate on the possible meanings that the color juxtapositions in the paintings may have had.

Cite this Record

Bonampak Will Never Be Finished: Some Remarks in Honor of Steve Houston. Mary Miller. Presented at The 84th Annual Meeting of the Society for American Archaeology, Albuquerque, NM. 2019 ( tDAR id: 451716)

Spatial Coverage

min long: -94.197; min lat: 16.004 ; max long: -86.682; max lat: 21.984 ;

Record Identifiers

Abstract Id(s): 24050