Sudaka: Untangling The Mystical Powers of the Jaguar

By Museum of Contemporary Art Bogotá

Museum of Contemporary Art Bogotá

Sudaka (2014) by GuacheMuseum of Contemporary Art Bogotá

The term "sudaka" can have negative connotations; however, it has become a declaration of resilience from Latin American countries. The jaguar is the largest feline in the American continent and its astute and stealthy character plays a central role in the cosmology and mythologies of the ancestral cultures.

Its jaw is extremely powerful and it has one of the strongest bites, and it can devour a caiman. Most of the anthropomorphic figures made in America have sharp jaguar teeth.

The hexagons with the primary colors express the connection to the spirit world and its power to strike a balance between day and night, in other words, between life and death.

The jaguar's eyes are adapted to see at night and they turn a deep green color when they reflect light. This ability to walk in the dark becomes a mystical state for shamans.

Their whiskers work like sensors that collaborate with sight and smell to locate their prey.

The cultures that cohabit with the jaguar have translated their paw prints, their imposing behavior, and their role in nature into the cosmological universe and the way to see and understand the world.

Credits: Story

This work of art was included in the "Hybrid Identities" exhibit, a project that encourages us to discover our identity through works of art from the permanent collection.
Texts by Gustavo A. Ortiz Serrano

Museo de Arte Contemporáneo de Bogotá, entidad cultural de UNIMINUTO.

Credits: All media
The story featured may in some cases have been created by an independent third party and may not always represent the views of the institutions, listed below, who have supplied the content.
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