Casta Paintings During The Columbian Exchange

559 Words3 Pages

The discovery of the Americas introduced a new culture to a world dominated by the European style of life. The perception of Native Americans in the Colombian era varied greatly between people such as those who crafted Casta paintings which were too often racist and depicted Natives as savages and uncivilized. There were also those such as John White who saw the beauty in the simplistic nature based lifestyle of the native people. The various images crafted during the Columbian Exchange represent a biased perception of different cultures around the world and often attacks the cultures that aren't their own.
Casta is a hierarchical system of racial classes used by Spanish elites. This system placed those of the white race higher than those of colored skin. Casta paintings were created to depict circumstances often of a white male, Native female, and a mixed race child. These paintings illustrated Native Americans as savages and showed the males were perceived as better than women through the connection to the races and connotations …show more content…

In these painting they were often depicted wearing frilly and decorated clothing and surrounded by objects that signified their accomplishment or wealth. In the portrait of Queen Elizabeth I, her dresses is very large and her neck is decorated with beads and gems. Upon her head sits a crown accompanied by a second one in the left corner. She has various pictures of ships at sea and she is holding a globe in her hand perhaps to signify England's voyage to the America’s and the colonies they began. This painting establishes a political power and wealth through the objects in the painting. This portrayal of Queen Elizabeth however is strictly one of someone who appreciates her political status. The Queen’s competitor during the Columbian Era, the Spanish, perhaps saw her as cunning and a

Show More
Open Document