Armed archangels or angel musketeers were frequent Andean motifs. Although also found in Spanish art, in the Andes the vivid coloration of their feathered wings was distinctly American. The archangels were dressed in splendor, imitating Spanish Viceroys, and held weapons that were part of their symbolic trappings. Costume was more important than anatomy, color more than line. Andean imagery, part of ancient Precolumbian symbolism, dominated primarily in the textiles and featherwork. Feather headdresses, crowns, and garments such as those displayed here were prized in Andean aesthetics.
Apter-Gabriel, Ruth (Ed.), The Arthur and Madeleine Chalette Lejwa Collection in the Israel Museum, The Israel Museum, Jerusalem, 2005