Mayan art procession displays forgotten Latino culture


Brooke Sotelo

Winifred Godfrey, artist, explains her work at the opening reception.

The Mayan Procession art reception honored the endangered indigenous Mayan groups of Guatemala on Oct. 5 and Oct. 12.

The art was by Winifred Godfrey. Kenneth Kincaid, associate professor of history, gave remarks at the event and Judy Jacobi, assistant vice chancellor of University Art Collections and Special Programs, was in charge of the event.

Known for her sprawling floral and nature-oriented paintings, Godfrey’s artwork in the reception pays proper respect to the indigenous Mayan groups and increases awareness regarding Latino culture.

“My Mayan procession is a monument to an endangered group of people who have been greatly affected by the government, army, church, tourism and Western culture,” Godfrey said. “The fact that they have maintained their culture in the face of this onslaught is a miracle. The procession is the way I chose to honor this beautiful and mystical group of people.”

The paintings on display as well as the traditional garments showcase the different indigenous people and their villages. The influence of Western culture can be seen as well, from Westernized details in the outfits to completely Westernized wardrobes.

Jacobi described the exhibit as a funeral procession and also as a way for Godfrey to reflect on the different styles of art.

“I think it’s very important to understand the context and backstory of art,” Jacobi said. “These costumes are part of a period that has disappeared for the most part.”

Jacobi said it is part of PNW’s mission to engage the student to immerse themselves in art.

“It’s so important to see and talk about art, as it’s all about being well-rounded and ensuring that our students are world ready,” Jacobi said.