Learn about the distinct cultures of the Peruvian Amazon through our original documentation of their art and traditions.
Photography: Davis Torres / Tui Anandi / Mike van Kruchten
© Xapiri Ground 2018 - 2023
The Iskonawa designs are characterized by zigzag strokes, which in their language are called "kere kere". According to the elders, the designs do not have specific meanings; however, they show a relationship with nature, such as the skin of the snake or the cone hill.
In the Awajún universe, producing art is the product of a dynamic relationship between knowledge, ritual, and mythical narration. In their worldview, there are three powerful beings: Nugkui (spirit of the earth), Etsa (spirit of the forest) and Tsuqki (spirit of the water).
There are 31 Yine designs, each with a particular meaning which are passed down orally from elders. The iconography of the designs are mainly based on animals according to their physical attributes. A commonly used representation is the back of the boa known as “mantona."