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In her study of the sixteenth century mural decorations in the monastery church at Malinalco, a Nahua-speaking town in central Mexico, Jeanette Peterson characterized this type of collaborative project as a dialogue involving continual feedback between artist and patron, subtly incorporating the world view of each into a new and powerful art form:

"Such joint native-friar projects...demonstrate not only the sustaining power of older indigenous views, but their viability, capable of effecting subtle transformations from the Nahua to the Christian and back again. As active participants, native scribes and artists helped to shape Christian texts and imagery to reflect their own world view and belief system" (Peterson 1993:7).

Central altarpiece of the church.