It is located in a former convent of the mid-seventeenth century, which was linked to the Franciscan order, important for its cloisters, library and for housing in its museum several art collections. The diverse collections that this monastery houses are distributed in several dependencies of the building, among them it is possible to mention the pre-Columbian ones of the cultures moche, chimú and Inca, of the Amazonia, with utensils and clothes of their tribes; of religious art, with canvases and liturgical objects, as well as paintings of the school cuzqueña and Italian. Its library, where valuable copies printed in the XV century are conserved, is considered one of the most important of Peru, in religious subjects.
The convent has distributed the museum in the following areas:
Located in front of the Chapel of the wake, in the superior part of entrance there is a painting of San Diego de Alcalá. Its showcases keep excellent samples of Chimú, Mochica, Inca, Churajón and Chancay Cultures, of this last one are the greater number of huacos. And a variety of Wari, Paracas, Inca, etc. textiles.
Two rooms of solid ashlar contain an interesting collection of our jungle fauna, birds, mammals, ophidians, arachnids, reptiles, butterflies and insects. Objects of the daily life of the Shipiba, Ashaninga, Machiguenga, Witoto and Yagua tribes.
There are representative works of religious art, miniature sculptures made of wax and Huamanga stone or alabaster, as well as monstrances, vessels and sacred ornaments, beautifully embroidered with gold, silver and silk threads.
It is the most accurate reflection of the austerity of convent life. Here he spent several years of his life one of the glories of this house: Monsignor Fray Mariano Holguín, first Archbishop of Arequipa.
The current building dates from 1926. Its shelves contain approximately 20 thousand volumes, many of them printed in the XVI, XVII and XVIII centuries.
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