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Sodalitium Christianae Vitae - English / News  / Peruvian Nativity scenes: An exhibition in the Museum of the Nation that you should not miss

Peruvian Nativity scenes: An exhibition in the Museum of the Nation that you should not miss

Inaugurated on December 8 in the Mochica room of the Ministry of Culture (Lima-Peru), the popular art exhibition “Peruvian Nativity Scenes” will continue until Thursday, February 2nd, as announced by the organizers.

Manuelito Waqchakhuay. Artwork by Larry Segundo Orellana. (Courtesy of ICTYS)

Manuelito Waqchakhuay. Artwork by Larry Segundo Orellana. (Courtesy of ICTYS)

It is a collection, to be admired, with works of various artisanal lines that have won the National Nativity Contest that the Theatrical and Social Cultural Institute (ICTYS) has been organizing annually.

From 2005 to its most recent edition, this Contest has allowed great visibility of the work carried out by talented Peruvians, as the ceramist from Cusco Larry Segundo Orellana, author of the 2020 winning work, has transmitted to us.

“I have never received national recognition before and the contest organized by ICTYS marked a new beginning for me in my career as a traditional artist, here I was really in the showcase, my work was in the news in my region, I had interviews on local radio stations, on television, praise from local authorities who saw my work”.

This exhibition, presented thanks to the joint effort of the Ministry of Culture and ICTYS, is a great learning opportunity about the work of Peruvian artisans that we recommend not to miss. Admission is free, from 9 in the morning to 6 in the afternoon at Av. Javier Prado Este 2465, Lima.

A great way to learn about nativity scenes in Peruvian art

Upon entering the Mochica room, towards the wall on the right side, you will find explanatory panels with the four specialty lines of artisan production.

Carving, mates and huingos, Imagery and pottery and ceramics; Spending time reading this content will allow you not only to better understand each exposed nativity scene, but also to imagine what happens in the time of deep work that each artisan dedicates to their work.

Then, contemplating each nativity scene will be the practice of the lesson, like being in the workshop with the teachers, accompanying them and enjoying the effort they put into each detail according to the artisan line that they have developed in the work that you will have before your eyes.

“The Cajamarquino child Jesus”. Artwork by Juan Valencia (Courtesy of ICTYS).

“The Cajamarquino child Jesus”. Artwork by Juan Valencia (Courtesy of ICTYS).

You will also be able to appreciate a reflection of different traditions of the people of each artisan. For example, Juan Valencia, author of the winning work of the 2022 Contest, tells us that his creation represents “a typical Cajamarquina and traditional clothing that is celebrated in this way during the Christmas festivities”.

Do you know any manger with the baby Jesus in the arms of Saint Joseph?

Perhaps we are used to seeing the baby Jesus in the arms of his mother, or in the midst of Joseph and Mary lying in a manger, and finding something different attracts a lot of attention.

This is the case of the work presented by Larry Segundo Orellana, who is dedicated to the artisan line of ceramics and has titled his work: Manuelito Waqchakhuay “Manuelito Misericordioso”, (translated from Quechua). In it, the artist from Cusco has managed to express an ancient tradition of his beloved city, the Santurantikuy fair.

Orellana told us that he thought of the composition of him seeking to represent the families of Cusco, who in the days before Christmas are infected with the spirit of this time.

Detail of Larry Segundo's work.

Detail of Larry Segundo’s work.

“I represent María serving the chocolate and attending to the children and her mothers; on the other hand, to José, who cares for the newborn, Manuelito, with great care and love”.

This is what can be seen in the same place, according to the artist, where the women are in charge of the business, the sales, while the men take care of their children. “It is what I was able to perceive in this fair”, he adds.