Project Leaders

Central American mola textile introducing the labyrinth as a representation of the spiritual realm


©The  Trustees of the British Museum

Francisco Javier Aceituno (Ph.DComplutense University, Spain) is a Spanish archaeologist who works in Colombia. He is currently full professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Antioquia (Colombia). His research focuses on the study of the origins of agriculture in the Neotropics, as well as on the archaeobotany and lithic technologies related to the early peopling of Colombia. He has published in peer-reviewed journals such as Quaternary Science Review, Quaternary International, Journal of Anthropological Archaeology, Environmental Archaeology and World Archaeology. He has participated in projects funded by the European Research Council and National Science Foundation. 

Jully Acuña Suárez 

Artist and Ph.D. Researcher, Faculty of Archaeology, Leiden University 

BA in Visual Arts, Pre-MA in Photography and Media, MA in Heritage Studiesña/ 

Lorena Ancona (Chetumal, Q. Roo, 1981) Studied at the National Academy of Visual Arts ENPEG “La Esmeralda”, Mexico City and the National School of Decorative Arts ENSAD Paris, France.  Lorena Ancona is a visual artist who works with sculpture, ceramics and weaving through the exploration of the history of Mesoamerican dyes, pigments, materials and places. Her work is the result of a research-based practice that questions intangible displacements from forgotten traditions, heritage and identities. Using experimental techniques as an artistic methodology her works seeks to build knowledge through the analysis and identification of minerals in their ethnic bio-cultural surroundings. Recent projects have taken a particular interest in the archaeological contexts and technological evidence of a synthetic organomineral (clay) pigment known as Maya blue. Lorena’s research is part of an extended narrative in which the artistic gesture can give form to potential representations and stories, which in turn reintroduce forgotten materialities that would otherwise be lost.

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I am Jair Boro Munduruku and I come from the village Caroçal Rio das Tropas, which is on the Tropas river, a tributary of the Upper Tapajós river. I am currently completing my undergraduate degree in archaeology at the Universidade Federal do Oeste do Pará in Santarém. Archaeology has given me a way to return to my origins, and to value the history and culture of my people. I hope my work can be useful in our struggle for Indigenous rights. 

Louisa Daggers is a researcher and coordinator of the Amerindian Research Unit, Department of Language and Cultural Studies, University of Guyana. She is author of several journal articles, monographs and technical reports published in both national and international journals and magazines. Daggers is currently an associate researcher of the Santa Domingo Center of Excellence, and serves as Editor of the Journal of Archaeology and Anthropology. 

Her research is focused on investigating the dynamics of shell midden occupation along the coastal zone of Guyana working in collaboration with Professor. Mark G. Plew of Boise State University. Her more recent research attempts to reconstruct Holocene environmental change, through the use of carbon and Oxygen Isotopic analysis of human and faunal remains of shell midden populations along the North Western Coast of Guyana.   

Recognizing the need for legislative framework to manage cultural and archaeological heritage she Is also extensively involved in site documentation, assessments and management working closely with indigenous communities to promote conservation and management of cultural resources.  


Walter Manrique Cervantes is a trained lawyer and works as an actor and theatre director. In 2017, Walter founded Yapa films, which is an audiovisual collective that seeks to promote cultural expression and art as well as defend human rights. He has directed short films such as, Hermanos, Coplas de Carnaval Loncco y Música Arequipeña. Walter has participated in various projects as a producer, sound designer, director of photography and cameraman. His short film, Aves Itinerantes, was selected in second place at the 48-Hour Film Project, in Arequipa. His documentary Mercado was selected for the 8th Film Festival in Cusco as well as for the 4th Semana del Cine en Lima.  

Currently, Walter is working on two documentary film projects as well as on his law thesis entitled, “A Legal Analysis of the Distribution and Display Market of Cinema in Peru”.   

Marcelo Marques Miranda 

BA in Archaeology and History, MA in Heritage Studies 

Ph.D. Researcher, Faculty of Archaeology, Leiden University 

Luciana Martins is Professor of Latin American Visual Cultures at Birkbeck, University of London and Visiting Researcher at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. Her books include O Rio de Janeiro dos Viajantes: O Olhar Britânico (2001), Tropical Visions in an Age of Empire (with F. Driver, 2005) and Photography and Documentary Film in the Making of Modern Brazil (2013). Principal Investigator on the AHRC-funded research project on Andean textiles, Weaving Communities of Practice, she is currently working on a monograph entitled Drawing Together: The Visual Archive of Expeditionary Travel, supported by the Leverhulme Trust 

Juan Felipe Miranda is a multidisciplinary researcher and artist. He holds a doctorate in telecommunications, a musicology diploma, and a Masters degree in Knowledge, Practice and Inheritance related to Dance. This Masters degree was financed by the European Union. His thesis applied aspects of semiotic theory to the study of the Afro-Peruvian zapateo dance as it is practiced in Lima.

Juan considers that research and artistic practice should go hand in hand. He is a member of the Decolonial Research Group at the University of Science and Technology in Norway. He is also a member of the study group, Multílogos, which promotes the reflexive study of dance, movement and the body. Juan is also part of various artistic projects: he is currently the only zapateo instructor in Arequipa, Peru. He was recently invited to participate in the LimaZap Festival 2019, which is the world’s largest zapateo festival. Juan has also worked as a musical theatre director for the play, La Cautiva and, alongside Cecilia Obregón, he is working on an adaptation of Sophocles’ Antigone. This production is set in contemporary Peru and combines theatre with traditional and popular music, as well as various dance genres.