Caupolicán: Image and identity in Chilean public sculpture

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Caupolicán, the statue created in the nineteenth century by the Chilean sculptor Nicanor Plaza, is considered one of the most important works of Chilean sculpture and the first example of a Mapuche subject in the national public sculpture. However, the history of the sculpture reveals that it has had two different identities in different contexts: in the United States the statue was commercialized as The Last of the Mohicans, while in Chile it was recognized as Caupolicán. This study examines the circumstances in which Plaza's statue reached popularity among Chilean audiences and became known as one of the most emblematic figures of Chilean visual culture.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)101-111
Number of pages11
JournalRevista de Historiografia
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2013


  • Caupolicán
  • Chilean sculpture
  • National identity
  • Nicanor plaza


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