Reconstructed Tenochtitlan honored
In June, Professor Antonio Serrato-Combe presented his reconstruction of Templo Mayor precinct in Tenochtitlan — the capital of the Aztec Empire — at Arqueológica 2.0. Held in Seville, Spain, the conference brought together archaeologists, architects, historians, curators, graphics programmers, and researchers from over twenty-five countries with a common interest in the use of graphic digital tools to better understand and preserve our cultural heritage. Among tough competition, Serrato-Combe’s project topped the list as one of the eight best projects worldwide.
The Templo Mayor precinct in Tenochtitlan, Mexico was the center stage for the drama of Aztec ceremonial life. The temple served as the setting for energized, colorful rituals depicting the relationships between temples and mountains, social groups, and humans and their gods. Writing at the time of the Conquest, Bernal Díaz del Castillo said of the ritual ceremonies that he “saw things he had never seen before, not even in dreams.”
Serato-Combe’s project encompasses fifty-five architectural conceptualizations of the temple precinct at various stages of development. Using computer-generated, three-dimensional color imagery, he presents a series of architectural topics ranging from site-planning principles to details of buildings within the precinct. Originally published in book format, the images were used by the British Museum to help recreate Moctezuma’s world for the major exhibition “Moctezuma: Aztec Ruler” and are cited by The Metropolitan Museum of Art and other major cultural institutions worldwide as suggested reading companions to their Americas collections.
At Arqueológica 2.0, Serrato-Combe’s reconstruction of Tenochtitlan was recognized alongside other stunning reconstructions that included Persepolis, Karnak, the Phoenician ships of Mazarrón, the Escuela de Estudios Árabes in Granada, Medieval Dublin, Carnuntum and the Domus Aurea.
All images copyright Antonio Serrato-Combe
About Antonio Serrato-Combe
Antonio Serrato-Combe is Professor of Architecture. His current research specialization is in the area of digital and computer applications in architecture. He has received numerous architecture and urban design awards from the American Institute of Architects, the American Planning Association and the National Endowment for the Arts. He is also recipient of the Hatch Prize for Excellence in Teaching, the University of Utah’s highest award for continued excellence in teaching.
Serrato-Combe received his degrees from the National Autonomous University of Mexico and Texas A&M University. For fifteen years, he was projects director at ASSIST, a Community Design Center, where he developed master plans for the Gateway District in Salt Lake City, the South Towne Center in Sandy, the E-Center in West Valley City and the Lester Park District in Ogden, Utah.
Serrato-Combe has lectured and given numerous presentations on digital design at academic and professional venues across the globe.