Faculty Bulletin Board

UCLA art historian Stella Nair writes new book on Inca architecture

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Stella Nair
UCLA

Stella Nair

The University of Texas Press has published a new book by Stella Nair, UCLA professor of art history and member of the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology at UCLA: "At Home with the Sapa Inca: Architecture, Space, and Legacy at Chinchero."

"At Home with the Sapa Inca: Architecture, Space, and Legacy at Chinchero" examines the breathtaking stone buildings and royal estate of Chinchero. Most importantly, Nair’s study reveals several false paradigms that have profoundly misguided  how we understand Inca architecture, for instance, the belief that it ended with the arrival of Spaniards in the Andes.

Nair’s interests include material culture studies, cross-cultural exchange, hemispheric networks, landscape transformations, spatial theory and construction technology. Trained as an architect and architectural historian, Nair has conducted fieldwork in Bolivia, Mexico, Peru and the U.S. Midwest in addition to her ongoing projects in the South Central Andes. Her research centers on the art, architecture and urbanism of indigenous communities in the Americas. Nair closely examines the ways in which the arrival of Europeans impacted these indigenous communities.

The new book follows the publication of "The Stones of Tiahuanaco: a Study of Architecture and Construction" (2013, Cotsen Institute of Archaeology Press), which she coauthored with Jean-Pierre Protzen. The book contains insights into the world's most artful and skillful stone architecture at Tiahuanaco, located at the southern end of Lake Titicaca in Bolivia.

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