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Temple of Doom



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The Walls Speak
Photograph by Ira Block

The hues of an ancient battle reemerge under the careful hand of conservator Segundo Losada. This mural adorns the walls of Huaca Cao Viejo, a huaca, or pyramid, in a 1,900-year-old complex of ruins known as El Brujo. This thriving religious center was built by the Moche people, who dominated Peru's northern coast from A.D. 100 to 800. At El Brujo they performed rituals, buried their prominent dead, and practiced grisly human sacrifice. Archaeologists have not found rich tombs here, like those found 80 miles (130 kilometers) north at the Moche site of Sipán. But they have uncovered elaborate murals, friezes, and reliefs that shed new light on this relatively unknown people.

Photo Fast Facts

Camera: Canon EOS 1V
Film Type: Fujichrome Provia 100
Lens: 70-200mm lens @ 135mm
Speed and F-Stop: 1/125 @ f/5.6
Weather Conditions: Open shade with covering
Time of Day: Unrecorded
Lighting Techniques: I used additional strobes on the wall to highlight the artwork.


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