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Event Series Event Series: The Mystery of Chaco Canyon

The Mystery of Chaco Canyon

June 7 @ 5:45 pm

Part of “The Mysteries of Chaco Canyon” event series with the Solstice Project June 7-13

Playing in the CCA Studio

June 7: Screens at 5:45pm
June 9-13: Playing daily at 5:45pm (no screenings Monday and Tuesday)

The Mystery of Chaco Canyon (1999) examines the deep enigmas presented by the massive prehistoric remains found in Chaco Canyon in northwestern New Mexico. It is the summation of 20 years of research. The film reveals that between 850 and 1150 AD, the Chacoan people designed and constructed massive ceremonial buildings in a complex celestial pattern throughout a vast desert region. Aerial and time lapse footage, computer modeling, and interviews with scholars show how the Chacoan culture designed, oriented and located its major buildings in relationship to the sun and moon. Pueblo Indians, descendants of the Chacoan people, regard Chaco as a place where their ancestors lived in a sacred past.

The film challenges the notion that Chaco Canyon was primarily a trade and redistribution center. Rather it argues that it was a center of astronomy and cosmology and that a primary purpose for the construction of the elaborate Chacoan buildings and certain roads was to express astronomical interests and to be integral parts of a celestial patterning.

While the Chacoans left no written text to help us to understand their culture, their thoughts are preserved in the language of their architecture, roads and light markings. Landscape, directions, sun and moon, and movement of shadow and light were the materials used by the Chacoan architects and builders to express their knowledge of an order in the universe.

Director: Anna Sofaer
Writers: Matt Dibble, Anna Sofaer
Features: Paul Pino, Anna Sofaer
Narration: Robert Redford
Running Time: 1 hr.
Film: Documentary
Language: English

This film is part of CCA’s Mysteries of Chaco Canyon event series with The Solstice Project June 7-13.   Read more about the other films, expert panels, and events and download the schedule here.


Note: Tickets are only $3.00 for EBT cardholders

1050 Old Pecos Trail
Santa Fe, NM 87505 United States
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(505) 982-1338
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