Taino Art of theDominican RepublicbyPaula RoswellEducational Technology http://www.worldatlas.com/webimage/flags/countrys/cribbean/domnrep.htm
The purpose of this presentation is to introduce students to the history, culture and artwork of the Taino people of the Dominican Republic. • While artifacts from the Taino are represented in major museums and private collections, the continued preservation of their artwork could be in danger due to an increase in mining operations. • With the opening of the world’s largest gold mine at Rosario Dominicana, the Pueblo Viejo mine, will bring a much needed economic and ecologic recovery for the country; the fate of its cave art is uncertain.
Where in the world is the Dominican Republic? The Dominican Republic is located on the island of Hispaniola which is approximately 600 miles from Florida and is just 68 miles from Puerto Rico. http://www.worldatlas.com/webimage/countrys/namerica/caribb/do.htm
Who are the Taino? • Hispaniola was originally settled around 3,000-4,000 B.C. by native South Americans who formed an agricultural society, naming themselves, Taino, which translates to “good” or “noble”. It was the Taino who first farmed the rich agricultural land growing yucca. • The Taino people organized themselves into small villages with approximately 1,000 to 2,000 people, with a village chief, either male or female called a cacique. Basing their collective economy on yucca, they also hunted and fished forming a communal family-oriented society.
Petroglyphs? • Although the Taino people had no written language, they did leave behind caves covered in petroglyphs. • What are petroglyphs? Petroglyphs are rock drawings. • Those of the Taino featured figural representations of both humans and animals. http://www.centrelink.org/TainoCavePhotos.html
Discovered in 1851 by Sir Robert Schonburgk, who was then British consul to the Dominican Republic, the 54 caves containing more than 6,000 images are considered by scholars to be the finest Precolumbian rupestral works in the Caribbean. http://www.centrelink.org/TainoCavePhotos.html
More about the Taino People…. • The Taino culture was based upon a polytheistic and animistic religion, showed a strong bond with nature. • Each of the tribal chiefs had a guardian divinity, and along with priests and shamans held two great ceremonies. • Although 95 percent of the populace is Roman Catholic, with the first cathedral being built in 1540, Santa Maria la Menor in Santa Domingo; all citizens by decree of the constitution have freedom of religion. • Similar to the early Taino practice, every community has a Catholic church along with Catholic saint whom they refer to as their patron saint and celebrate Patronales. Patronales is a nine-day festival celebrated with special masses, speeches, skits, music and dancing.
Taino Cave Art http://www.centrelink.org/TainoCavePhotos.html • http://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20110921/washington-heights-inwood/photographer-brings-dominican-cave-art-streets-of-northern-manhattan/slideshow/popup/121257
Taino Cave Art http://www.centrelink.org/TainoCavePhotos.html
Inside view of one of the caves • http://www.mikesjournal.com/July%202008/July%202008.htm
More Taino Art Taino people were not only known for their cave art, but for their various vessels, which are on display in the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City. Pendant Mask, 13th–15th centuryDominican Republic; TainoBone Pendant Figure, 13th–15th centuryDominican Republic; TainoStone http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/works-of-art/1997.35.1 http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/works-of-art/1997.35.3
Deity Figure (Zemi), 15th–16th centuryDominican Republic; TainoIronwood, shell H. 27 in. (68.5 cm) http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/works-of-art/1979.206.380
Fabricated of matte-surfaced fired clay with a minimum of decoration, Bowls come in a variety of shapes. This one has a decorative rim and handles shaped like bat heads. Associated with night, darkness, and death, bats frequently appear in Taino art. Bowl, 13th–15th centuryDominican Republic; TainoCeramic http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/works-of-art/1982.48.3
Trigonolitos Trigonolitos are three cornered stones, usually small in size. They were often found to have large ominous faces, like this one, but their function is really not known. Three-Cornered Stone with Face, 13th–15th centuryDominican Republic; TainoFossiliferous limestone http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/works-of-art/1997.35.2
Although artwork of the Taino people are represented in major museums and private collections around the world. The future of their cultural artifacts, are considered by some to be in danger due to the opening of the world’s largest gold mine. Figure, 13th–15th centuryDominican Republic; TainoDiorite or granodiorite http://www.metmuseum.org/toah/works-of-art/1982.48.6
The primary source of revenue in the Dominican Republic has been agriculturally based, sugar, tobacco, and coffee. Although still a major factor in the economy of the Dominican, which has a free trade agreement with the United States and Central America, tourism and mining have become increasingly important. http://www.mining-technology.com/projects/cerro-de-maimon-copper-and-gold-mine/cerro-de-maimon-copper-and-gold-mine2.html http://www.tourist-destinations.com/2011/06/punta-cana-dominican-republic.html
According to a recent news story by the Associated Press, the world’s largest gold mine is soon to open at Rosario Dominicana, the Pueblo Viejo mine. By the combined efforts of the world’s two biggest gold companies, the Barrick Gold Corporation of Toronto and Goldcorp Incorporated of Vancouver, the operation is set to open in several weeks. At the heart of the matter is the use of cyanide to process the ore, as the current site was abandoned 13 years prior due to environmental damage caused by chemical runoff. http://www.wayfaring.info/2010/08/19/punta-cana/ http://www.mining-technology.com/projects/cerro-de-maimon-copper-and-gold-mine/cerro-de-maimon-copper-and-gold-mine2.html
According to the Associated Press report, Director Octavio Lopez is quoted as saying, "Imagine what this will do for our economy aside from the exploitation of the gold, with some 10,000 jobs, 83 percent of them for Dominicans." If gold prices hold up, mining eventually will surpass tourism as the country's largest income earner, with royalties and other revenue making up about 5 percent of the government's budget. The company will pay a 3.2 percent per ounce royalty on net sales after production begins. The company projects it will contribute about $7 billion over the estimated 25-year life of the mine to the government, with 5 percent allocated for municipalities around the mine. http://www.mining-technology.com/projects/cerro-de-maimon-copper-and-gold-mine/cerro-de-maimon-copper-and-gold-mine2.html
Barrick's investment is paying to clean up the site, $75 million so far, and the company says it has stopped the toxic runoff from the main site and the red tint in local rivers is fading. Bonilla estimates it will take about a decade for the environment around the mine to fully recover. "Our target 10 years from now is to see wildlife in these streams again, to see fish and other species back into these rivers," he said. The company says its "world class environmental management system," has planted thousands of trees to prevent erosion and will rely on an autoclave technology for ore processing that will prevent the release of acid and other chemicals. The impact on this mining operation on the environment, the Taino people artifacts, economy and the people of the Dominican Republic, I am sure will be a hot topic for years to come. http://vidamexicana.wordpress.com/2009/06/25/my-first-stops-when-i-win-the-lottery
View from Pico Duarte, in the Dominican Republic, the largest peak in the Caribbean Islands. • http://www.localyte.com/places-to-visit/Dominican%2BRepublic--San%2BJuan--San%2BJuan%2Bde%2Bla%2BMaguana
References • Báez-Hernández., S.(2008). Radical History Review, (101), 130-143. doi:10.1215/01636545-2007-041 • Central Intelligence Agency (2011). CIA-The World Factbook. Retrieved from https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/index.html • Fox, B. & Abiu Lopez, E. (2012, July 3). Dominican Republic bets on gold to boost economy. Times Leader. Retrieved from http://www.timesleader.com/stories/Dominican-Republic-bets-on-gold-to-boost-economy • Kaplan, S. (2004) Emma’s Hearts. Ceramics Monthly, 52 (10), 14-16 Retrieved from http://www.consuls.org • Miller, J. (2004) Pottery as Identity. Ceramics Technical, (19), 84-87 Retrieved from http://www.consuls.org • Momsen, J. & de Tolentino, M., Dominican Republic. Grove Art Online. Oxford Art Online. 8 Jul. 2012 www.oxfordartonline.com.www.consuls.org/subscriber/article/grove/art/T023214
References • Newton, D., Vogel, S. & Schaffer, A., Notable Acquisitions (Metropolitan • Museum of Art), No. 1981/1982, pp. 65-68 • http://0-www.jstor.org.www.consuls.org/stable/1513597 • Peace Corps, (2011, February 11). Culture Matters. Coverdell World Wise • Schools. Retrieved from • http://www.peacecorps.gov/wws/publications/culture/index.cfm • Schuster, A.H. (2001). Taino Cave Art Under Seige. Archaeology, 54(2), 15. • Retrieved from www.consuls.org • U.S. Department of State, (2010, July 27). Dominican Republic. Library of • Congress Country Studies. Retrieved from http://www.state.gov/p/wha/ci/dr/