The sublimity of the Sumiruna


Year: 1987
Size: 18″ x 24″ inches / 45.7 x 61 cm
Materials: gouache on arches
Frames: no
Pricing: contact us


In the center we see an opening to the subaquatic worlds. The first region belongs to the fair-haired mermaids, to the pink and the black dolphins, and to the white yakurunas. The second one belongs to the red yakurunas, to the Hitrodos, and to the blue and red mermaids. The third region belongs to the black yakurunas, to the pato-bufeos [duck-dolphins], and to the black mermaids. 

Through this hole the great characters of that world send a sumiruna to space with the help of the ancash silfos [blue sylphs] who transport him in a glass tube, which is the lupuna colorada [red lupunaCavanillesia sp.]. There we see him now, the sumiruna, standing on a ball of high-pressure gas, ready for levitation. He wears skins of the boa, trousers of ray-fish with feet of yangunturo [giant armadillo], and his hat is a macaw called yura-guacamayo

Two acorones or giant boas open their mouths to let the animals and yakurunas used by vegetalistas give their farewells to the great sumiruna. White mermaids make the capsule levitate. Flying saucers hurry to receive it, and to accompany it in its astral travel. 

At the lower left we see some expert curanderos swallowing various viroteswith their mariri. He who sits on a tortoise is a banco, and he swallows the virotes of the inchahui palm tree [Syagrus tessmannii], which is seen nearest the riverside. He who smokes his cachimba [pipe] has swallowed the virotes made of pona [Iriartea exorrhiza], the palm tree with long roots. The third vegetalista swallows the virotes made of the inayuga[Maximiliana stenocarpa], the thicker palm seen further away; while the last one takes the virotes made of the huasai palm [Euterpe precatoria], seen in front. Behind the inayuga is a cumaceba tree [Cesalpina equinata], the motelo huasca vine [Bauhinia guianensis], the sacha-ajos [Mansoa alliacea] and other plants. Behind the palm huasai stands the siuca-casha[sharp spine, unidentified] tree, and on the feet of the huasai is the sacha-huiro plant [Costus cf. cylindricus].

At the right we see a great sumiruna who lifts a white serpent to give power to a young man, his son. That is why the young man’s shirt is painted. This sumiruna has prepared his shoes and his cap to give to the initiated young man as protection as he is guided by the spirits of the brew. The black-shirted vegetalista is a disciple. The boy in the back has taken ayahuasca for the first time, and that is why he is frightened by the visions.

Behind these persons we see the ayahuasca liana with its wave-like powers, and over it the so-called chicua birds, physical guardians of this plant. Above them is the atun-caballo [strong horse], which radiates alpha-vibrations.