Saturday, July 26, 2014

Forty Years in the Andes

40 ans dans les Andes. L’itinéraire oublié de Théodore Ber (Forty Years in the Andes: The Lost Itinerary of Théodore Ber), an installation now on view at the Musée Champollion de Figeac, highlights the life and exploits of one of the first Andean archaeologists. The important collection Ber assembled in the nineteenth century  –  now divided between the Musée du Quai Branly, the Musée de l'Homme, and the Musée d'Archéologie National de Saint-Germain-en-Laye  –  has been partially reuinted for this special exhibition.

View the exhibition's official website.

Théodore Ber at the site of Tiahuanaco, Bolivia 
Cephalomorphic vessel  -  Tiahuanaco, Bolivia

Friday, July 25, 2014

From Samoa with Love

On view until October 5 at Munich's Museum für Völkerkunde is From Samoa with Love, an exhibition examining the origins and content of colonial-era imagery of Samoa in a way that has never been produced before, shedding light on the little-known history of the cultural exchanges that took place between Germany and its former Polynesian colony during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.  Using period photographs as well as objects from the museum's own collection, the installation's curators also enlisted the aid of Samoan nationals to help shed light on this unique period in history.

Imagery courtesy of the Museum für Völkerkunde

Friday, July 18, 2014

Image 'N Magie

Image 'N Magie, now on view at the Château-Musée de Tournon, is the second in a series of collaborative exhibitions produced by the Musée du Quai Branly that intends to foster an intercultural dialogue transcending time and space. Curated by Yves Le Fur and Jean-Michel Geneste, this exhibition seeks to decipher codes embedded in magical imagery. Divided into three global regions  –  Oceania, Africa, and the Americas – Image 'N Magie highlights the talent and ingenuity of artists from many cultures and time periods through a selection of forty hitherto unseen works, including masks, shield, bark paintings, sculptures, rattles, and more, all sourced from the collection of the Musée du Quai Branly.

View the exhibition's official website.

Mask  -  Papua New Guinea

Four-faced reliquary bust  -  Fang, Gabon

Altar figure  -  Baga, Guinea

Images courtesy of the Musée du Quai Branly

Thursday, July 17, 2014

Sons of the Sun

The Musée du Nouveau Monde continues to explore Native American culture with a new show entitled Indiens de la Californie et du sud-ouest des États-Unis (Indians of California and the American Southwest), on view from June 28–September 22. The exhibition includes material from both public and private French collection and is a reflection of a widespread interest in France about Indian culture and artifacts. Weapons, apparel, utilitarian items, and cult objects illustrate both the wealth of the collection made by French explorers and scientific expeditions as well s the fruitfulness of the exchanges that took place between the Musée du Trocadero and the Smithsonian Institution.

Mask  -  Jemez Pueblo

Ceremonial headdress  -  Pomo

Zoomorphic pot  -  Pueblo

Basket jar, olla  -  Apache

Images courtesy of the Musée du Nouveau Monde

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Plumes in Vichy

Through October 31, feathers are the focus at the Musée des Arts d'Afrique in Vichy.  Plumes (Feathers) includes works both owned by the museum and drawn from private collections, and its unique approach is a mix of art history and ethno-ornithology. Beginning with the premise that man has always been fascinated with birds, the exhibition examines the place of the bird in five of the world's regions: India, China, Côte d'Ivoire, New Guinea, and the United States. The installation features objects that have feathers as elements of their construction as well as representations in which the bird is the central subject of the work.

View the exhibition's official website.

Shaman's hairpin with raven head  -  Tlingit, Northwest Coast  -  Early 20th century

Image courtesy of the Musée des Arts d'Afrique, Vichy

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Voudou, du visible à l'invisible

Entering its last weeks at the Musée Africain de Lyon is Voudou, du visible à l'invisible (Voodoo: From the Visible to the Invisible), an exhibition exploring Voodoo beliefs and rituals through works from the collection of Claude Rouyer, an expert in Benin material who has collected fetishes and magical objects for more than twenty years. Photographs by Angés Pataux complement the objects, emphasizing the living and vital aspects of contemporary Voodoo practices.

View the exhibition's official website.

Image courtesy of Musée Africain de Lyon

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Hidden Power in African Art

Hidden Power in African Art, an exhibition devoted to African masks and sculpture on view at the Israel Museum until September 17, looks at the symbolic importance of these varied objects and particularly the roles of charges and other magical addenda. Long considered secondary accessories in the West, in reality these had more importance than the actual sculptures themselves, which were seen by the people who used them merely as vehicles for magical substances. The works selected for the exhibition, which come both from private collections and the museum's own holdings, are places into their spiritual context rather than simply relying on the secondary nature of their aesthetic qualities.

View the exhibition's official website.

Images courtesy of the Israel Museum, Jerusalem