Alba Menéndez Pereda


Currently PhD Candidate, Archaeology IDP, University of California, Los Angeles

2017 MPhil, Archaeology of the Americas, University of Cambridge

2016 BA, Archaeology and Ancient Civilizations, Durham University

Areas of Interest

Inca Empire, Andes, landscape studies, environmental humanities, built environment, past sensory experiences, sound studies, performances, Indigenous ways of knowing, spatial history, construction of history, colonialism in the Americas, cross-cultural exchanges


Alba Menéndez Pereda (she/her/hers) is a Ph.D. Candidate in the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology at the University of California, Los Angeles, where she studies the Inca Empire. In her doctoral research, Alba examines the relationship between Inca ways of making and remembering imperial history and the ephemerality of travelling performances in the Tahuantinsuyu through the early modern period from a space- and sense-centered perspective.

Originally from Madrid, Spain, Alba graduated with a B.A. in Archaeology and Ancient Civilizations from Durham University, and with an M.Phil. in Archaeology from the University of Cambridge where she specialized in the Archaeology of the Americas. Prior to joining the Cotsen Institute, Alba participated in numerous research projects covering various cultures and time periods, for which she conducted fieldwork in England, Italy, and Spain, and worked in a commercial archaeology unit (CRM) in England.

Currently, Alba is the manager of the Andean Lab at the Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, and co-organizes the Andean Working Group. Motivated by her interest in engaging the wider public in the study of the Andes, she manages and creates accessible digital content for the Andean Lab Instagram.


Instructor, Intro to Archaeology: Past, Present, and Future, Educational Studies Program, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Spring Semester 2022

Reader, Inca Art and Architecture, Prof. Stella Nair, Department of Art History, UCLA, Winter 2022

Instructor, Entendiendo la Sudamérica Indígena: Investigación y Colección, Instituto de Conservação e Restauro Pachamama, Fall 2022

Teaching Assistant, Art and Architecture of Ancient Americas, Prof. Stella Nair, Department of Art History, UCLA, Spring 2021

Teaching Assistant, Medieval Art, Prof. Sharon Gerstel, Department of Art History, UCLA, Winter 2021

Teaching Assistant, Museum Studies, Prof. Saloni Mathur, Department of Art History, UCLA, Fall 2020


ComSciCon Los Angeles (April 2021)

Social Media Manager, Institute of Andean Studies (2020–2021)

Workshop Facilitator, “Archaeology at Home!” Explore Your Universe, UCLA (November 2020)

Demonstration Facilitator, “Andean Textile Demonstration,” Annual Open House, Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, UCLA (May 2019)

Social Media Manager, Andean Lab, Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, UCLA (2019–present)

Workshop Facilitator, “Adventures in Archaeology: Ancient Andes,” 826LA, Los Angeles (May 2019)

Demonstration Facilitator, Prehistory and Archaeology Day, Festival of Ideas, University of Cambridge (October 2016)


Spanish, native speaker

English, bilingual

Quechua/Kichwa, beginner

French, beginner


Andean Lab

Andean Lab on Instagram

News from the Cotsen: Instagram Posts for Andean Lab Receive International Thumbs-Up

News from the Cotsen: Success of the Graduate Archaeology Research Conference Reflects Teamwork and Growth

Field Experience

Proyecto de Investigación Arqueológica Paisajes Arqueológicos de Pañamarca, Nepeña, Peru

Proyecto de Investigación Arqueológica Chincha, Chincha, Peru

Wardell Armstrong Archaeology, Ipswich, England

Medieval Islamic settlement of Madinat Albalat at Romangordo, Cáceres, Spain (CNRS–Université Lumière Lyon 2)

Cerro de la Merced, Cabra, Córdoba, Spain (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid)

“Caves in Context: The Place of Caves in Middle Bronze Age Southern Lazio,” Collepardo and Pastena, Italy (Durham University)

16th-century Abbot’s palace at Bulbuente, Zaragoza, Spain (Durham University)

Binchester Roman Fort, Binchester, England (Durham University)


“The Coricancha: Architecture of the Inca Sacred.” College Art Association Annual Conference, New York (16 February 2023)

“Performing History: Landscapes as Multisensorial Archives in the Inca Empire.” (Re)thinking Landscape: Ways of Knowing / Ways of Being Conference, Yale University, New Haven (30 September 2022)

“Beginning to Hear the Coricancha: Fine-Tuning our Knowledge of Inca Elite Ceremonies.” Sound, Space and the Aesthetics of the Sublime Conference, Stanford University, Stanford (21-22 May 2022)

“Lunch & Learn: An Inka Khipu.” The Fowler Museum (19 April 2022)


Dissertation Fieldwork Fellowship for International Studies, International Institute, UCLA

Graduate Student Summer Fellowship, CMRS Center for Early Global Studies, UCLA

Graduate Student Research Grant, Latin American Institute, UCLA

Summer Institute for Technical Studies in Art (Funded Participant), Harvard Art Museums & Department of History of Art and Architecture, Harvard University

Garden and Landscape Studies Graduate Workshop (Funded Participant), Dumbarton Oaks

Edilia and François-Auguste de Montêquin Junior Scholar Fellowship, Society of Architectural Historians

Edward A. Dickson Fellowship in the History of Art, Department of Art History, UCLA

Graduate Certificate in Early Modern Studies Summer Mentorship, Center for 17th- & 18th-Century Studies, UCLA

Steinmetz and Friends of Archaeology Research Travel Fund, Cotsen Institute of Archaeology, UCLA

Graduate Summer Research Mentorship, Graduate Division, UCLA

Fellowship for Postgraduate Studies in North America and Asia-Pacific, “la Caixa” Foundation

Birley Bursary Award, Department of Archaeology, Durham University


Dr. Stella Nair