Colombia is home to about 20% of the world’s birds. The bird immortalized in painting and sculpture around Cartagena is the Maria Mulata. A medium-sized bird of iridescent black or brown, Maria Mulata is neither blackbird or raven. Maria Mulata’s official name is the great- tailed grackle (Quiscalus mexicanus).
The story of Maria Mulata is a traditional tale shared with Two Who Trek by several local residents. Long ago, in the barrio of Getsemani, people and exotic animals co-existed. One of the animals was a vividly colored bird called Maria Mulata. When a raging fire overtook the neighborhood, Maria Mulatas carried the people to safety. The people were saved and forever grateful to their deliverers. Discolored by the fire and smoke, the bird’s colorful feathers remain blackened to this day but with proper sunlight, we can still see a hint of Maria Mulata’s former plumage. Continue reading
Categories: animals, art, artistic, background, birds, blog, Cartagena, Colombia, displays, folklore, nature, photos, travel
Tags: art, artist, artistic, bird, blog, Cartagena, Colombia, folklore, grackle, maria mulata, museum, photos, theatre, travel
The Museo Pumapungo is large as life! Located in Cuenca’s Banco Central complex, colorfully animated dioramas illustrate the varied cultures in Ecuador. These displays cover an entire floor and show life-sized examples from the coast, highlands and jungle. One exhibit features shrunken heads.
Other Pumapungo (“gate of the puma”) exhibits include photographs of early Cuenca life and a historical perspective on Ecuadorian currency. A special section shows this first 80 years of bank history. For a limited time, there is also an impressive exhibit called Oro y Plata. Many pieces of gold, silver and copper artifacts, created by indigenous people throughout Ecuadorian history, are showcased.
Categories: andean, archeological, blog, canaris, Cuenca, ecuador, inca, photos, ruins, travel
Tags: archeological, aviary, birds, cuenca, ecuador, garden, Inca, museum, pumapungo, ruins, tomebamba