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(aka Pablo Cesar Amaringo Shuna)
Pablo Amaringo was born in 1943 in Puerto Libertad, in the Peruvian Amazon region. He was 10 years old when he first took ayahuasca–a visionary brew used in shamanism. A severe heart illness–and the magical treatment of this via ayahuasca–led Pablo toward the life of a shaman, and he eventually became a powerful curandero–learning the icaros, or healing songs that the ayahuasca brew taught him.
In 1977, Pablo abandoned his vocation as a shaman, and he is now a painter and art instructor at his Usko-Ayar school, where there is no charge for the students to learn painting. Pablo has painted and described numerous ayahuasca visions, some of which have appeared in his book Ayahuasca Visions: The Religious Iconography of a Peruvian Shaman. He is currently working on paintings of angels for a forthcoming book, as well as paintings that document the flora and fauna of Peru.
Pablo Cesar Amaringo Shuña (1943 – 16 Nov. 2009); acclaimed Peruvian artist, renowned for his intricate, colourful depictions of his visions from drinking the entheogenic plant brew ayahuasca. He was first brought to the West's attention by Dennis McKenna and Luis Eduardo Luna, who met Pablo in Pucallpa while traveling during work on an ethnobotanical project. Pablo worked as a vegetalista, a shaman in the mestizo tradition of healing, for many years; up to his death, he painted, helped run the Usko-Ayar school of painting, and supervised ayahuasca retreats.
Amaringo was born the seventh of 13 children in 1943 in Puerto Libertad, a small settlement on the banks of a tributary of the Ucayali River. When Amaringo was a boy, his family were reduced to extreme poverty after some years of relative prosperity. As a result, they moved to Pucallpa where Amaringo attended school for just two years before he was forced to find work to help support the family.