They were endowed with intelligence, they succeeded in knowing all that there is in the world…And they contemplated in turn the arc of heaven and the round face of the earth."
[Popol Vuh, III, Ch. 2]
Welcome to the official page of the ARX Project.
We are a group of researchers from different academic fields and nationalities, linked by a common passion for the ancient world and by the belief in the need for a multidisciplinary approach to the interpretation of ancient sites.
We conduct and sponsor expeditions globally, combining the latest technologies with a rigorous scientific method.
The ARX Project was launched in 2020 with the goal to provide a multidisciplinary approach to the study of the ancient past. We work in partnership with governmental and non-governmental institutions to advance our knowledge of human history and the origins of civilization.
We are a Mexico based non profit organization that is sustained through the work and passion of our associates, as well as through the generosity and contributions of our sponsors, both public and private.
We constantly welcome new Team members to join in and collaborate on our projects and expeditions. Please, send us your CV or a short personal profile and we will be in touch.
Each one of our projects is aimed at expanding our knowledge of ancient societies and generate new data on the origin and development of civilization.
We promote a multidisciplinary approach to the study of our past, bringing together experts from different fields such as archaeologists, geologists, architects and speleologists for the exploration and documentation of archaeological sites.
Our expeditions are conducted in the utmost respect of local regulations and cultural sensitivities, combining on-the-ground exploration with the use of non-invasive exploration and investigation techniques like LiDAR, drones, satellite imagery and ground penetrating radar.
The question of the origin of Mesoamerican civilization is one that has intrigued generations of archaeologists, culture historians and anthropologists. The Olmecs, which flourished between 2,500 and 400 BC, have been long considered the earliest major civilization of Mesoamerica, expressing one of the first widespread artistic and cultural traditions in parts of what is today Mexico and Guatemala.
Since the early 1990’s, however, a new hypothesis has emerged that Mesoamerican civilization did not arise in isolation, but as part of a complex network of regional trade interactions that favored cultural exchange and the diffusion of similar artistic styles as well as pottery, stone and metalworking techniques across a wide area between western Mexico, Central and South America.
These contacts certainly took advantage of the extensive river network of ancient Mexico and Guatemala, particularly along the Balsas and Usumacinta rivers, where some of the earliest centers of Mesoamerican civilization outside of the Gulf coast of Mexico may be found.
By taking a Pan-American view of the development of civilization in the Americas, our mission is to document the complex mosaic of cultural influences that shaped the formative and classic period of Mesoamerican civilization.
Our methods combine traditional exploration with the use of the latest technologies in aerial and satellite imaging to help unravel the great puzzle of Mesoamerican origins, mapping and documenting the trade corridors and original centers of civilization of the Americas.
MISSION AND VISION
We believe that modern archaeological research can benefit from a multidisciplinary approach drawing from such diverse fields as archaeology, geology, geophysics, astronomy, history, climatology and comparative mythology.
We are convinced of the potential of new technologies such as remote sensing, geophysical methods, chemical and genetic analysis to deepen our understanding of the remote past, for which we provide external support and funding.
We have a vision for the ARX Project to become a recognized force in the search for the origins of civilization through field research, publications, conferences and documentaries, and welcome both recognized scholars and independent researchers.
Our Team consists of experts from different disciplines including archaeologists, geophysicists, speleologists, architects, engineers, photographers and digital artists.
Marco M. Vigato
Born in Italy and living in Mexico City, Marco has studied at Harvard and Milan’s Bocconi University. He has been researching ancient civilizations as an independent researcher for the past 15 years. He is an expert on ancient Mesoamerica, as well as a regular contributor to the Ancient Origins online magazine and to various other print and on-line journals and podcasts. He is also the author of books and publications on various subjects of history and prehistory related to the origins of civilization.
Born in France and living in Oaxaca, Ludovic holds a degree in architecture from the Grenoble School of Architecture. He has been an illustrator specialized in architecture for 12 years, since 2017 with a focus on Precolumbian visualization and iconographic investigation. His detailed 3D reconstruction of the postclassic Zapotec city of Mitla has won him praise in the archaeological field. His central investigation is the wide world of stepped-fret designs throughout the American continent.
Born in Poland and living in Mexico City, Aleksander attended California College of the Arts in San Francisco where he graduated with a Bachelor of Architecture. He spent several years working in Denmark with Bjarke Ingels Group, Henning Larsen Architects, and 3XN Architects. Afterwards he received a Master of Arts in Architecture from the Arkitektskolen Aarhus in Denmark. With his own design studio he has built many projects in Mexico including participation in the reconstruction efforts after the September 19, 2017 earthquake.
ARTICLES AND NEWS
In this section we will be publishing updates from our projects and important news relevant to our fields of study.
San Miguel Ixtapan
December 4, 2021
Recovery of a 5-ton megalithic stone slab
We are happy to announce the succesful recovery of the largest megalithic stone slab so far identified at the site of San Miguel Ixtapan, Mexico, which was sadly broken and vandalized by looters in recent years.
San Miguel Ixtapan
November 5, 2021
San Miguel Ixtapan - The Mexican Tiwanaku
Dozens of precisely carved megalithic stone slabs of a type unknown in Mesoamerica have been discovered near the village of San Miguel Ixtapan, Tejupilco, and may hint to a possible Andean influence in Central Mexico.
November 30, 2020
The Lost City of the Eagle
Perched on top of nearly vertical cliffs in the Mexican state of Puebla lie the ruins of a lost city of cyclopean stone platforms and pyramids, with mysterious hieroglyphs and sculptures that may date to the time of the Olmecs.
November 22, 2020
Mitla: Mexico's real Temple of Doom
Under the village of Mitla, Oaxaca, famous for its magnificent decorated palaces, lies a labyrinth of underground chambers and tombs still awaiting exploration, which the ancients believed was the entrance to the Underworld.
Sierra de Huautla
November 17, 2020
Tamoanchan - Cradle of Mesoamerican Civilization?
The Sierra of Huautla, in the central Mexican state of Morelos, may old the keys to origins of Mesoamerican civilization and the remains of an unknown megalithic culture.