Friday, October 9, 2009

Di Students Shoot Mayan Artifacts for PSUSD ELL

On Friday September 18, 2009 DATA Digital Imaging students Markie Hackwith, Arin Wall, and Spencer McQuinn had a rare and special opportunity to photograph ancient Mayan artifacts unearthed from the Banda del Oro mountain range that lies between Guatemala and El Salvador.  The shoot was arranged by Palm Springs Unified School District ELL coordinator Brian Lentz and will be shown in various Cathedral City High School classrooms and throughout the school district.

Brian Lentz explains the story behind the artifacts
"My Mayan collection of artifacts is really my father-in-law's collection.  They were, for the most part, dug up by his workers when they planted a new coffee tree.  They would hear a clunking sound and then clear away the dirt and remove whatever the object was- a bowl,  vase and in some cases, weapons.  Most pieces are from the area of Central America that lies between Guatemala and El Salvador along the Banda del Oro mountain range.  Nothing has been done to them.  Some are cracked from thousands of earthquakes that have rocked that area for centuries.  The jade piece is from a ruler's tomb and was given as a gift by an archeologist that my father-in-law assisted on a dig.  These are everyday items from Mayan households and that is my main attraction to them; common items tell a deeper story of the people who owned them rather than fully restored museum pieces.  The Power Point presentation of these artifacts will remain with Cathedral City High School so that it can be shown to future students and staff.  My gratitude to Markie who brilliantly photographed them and to Mr. Cauthron for opening his room to me so this presentation would become a reality."

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