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Monday, August 23, 2010

Olmecs and Birds at La Venta Museum

Our Saturday plans fell through so we ended up in Villahermosa for the day. Spent an hour at the La Venta Museum and Park checking out the giant Olmec heads and other famous monuments. Some of these include bird motifs, including possibly Harpy Eagle claws on the helmet of one giant head (you can see the talon tips pointing downward above band over the forehead below).

Here is a piece that has what are claimed to be owl heads on the side.

Olmec art is really amazing, including all kinds of strange images of beings that appear to be half human and half jaguar.

And this interesting piece, apparently unfinished (!) looks to me like what might happen if it had been carved by an Olmec Picasso.

As for real birds, there were a few, the best being a Boat-billed Heron perched high up above a small pond in the park. We didn't even see it there until something dropped down into the water next to us and we looked up and saw it 20 feet up in the tree.

The park also has a zoo with a few local birds including macaws, and my favorite, this King Vulture--a nemesis bird of mine that keeps alluding me on all my trips to Guatemala.

There were some free roaming Howler Monkeys in the park. I wasn't able to get a shot of them, so had to settle for these coatis. They were everywhere.

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