Hugo Pratt, skylines
Like his protagonist, Corto Maltese, Italian cartoonist Hugo Pratt was an avid and enthusiastic traveler. His drawings are replete with references to his trips. "Hugo Pratt, lignes d’horizon" explores the places that were dear to him, from the “Great Ocean” to the “Great North” by way of “Amazonia,” the “People of the Sun,” “Africa,” and the “Indians.” The first part of the exhibition features his original drawings, shown in conjunction with the cultural artifacts that enriched his visual universe. The latter are drawn from the museum's collection, augmented by loans from other institutions. The second part is an immersive experience into the artist’s imagination using graphics and sound. Recurring themes in his work, such as trance states and music, shamanism and divination, and signs and symbols, are explored. Another interesting part of this exhibition features two headdresses, one from the Great Plains of the United States and another from Ethiopia, given to the Musée des Confluences by collector Antoine de Galbert. His donation included more than 500 pieces of this kind, complemented by a few full costumes. After being inventoried, studied, and, in some cases, restored, the collection will be the subject of an exhibition in 2019.
Beyond Compare: African Art at the Bode Museum
Beginning on October 27, 2017, the Bode Museum
will present a “conversation between continents”
with an exhibition that features more than seventy African
sculptures from the collection of the Berlin Museum
of Ethnology. Beyond Compare sets up a dialog between
objects from Central and West Africa and masterpieces
from Byzantium, Italy, and central Europe. The exhibition
intends to create new interactions that highlight
unexpected similarities as well as differences between
artworks from unrelated traditions. More than thirty juxtapositions
illustrate major themes in human existence
such as power, death, beauty, memory, aesthetics, and
identity. On view through spring 2019, this show goes
beyond the mere comparison of sculptural traditions to
open interesting new perspectives.
More info here: http://www.tribalartmagazine.com/issue-87-sample-4
Secret: Who Is Allowed to Know What
The common thread that runs through a Murano glass bracelet, a heartshaped love letter, a Sande society mask from Sierra Leone or Liberia, and a kalengula mask from the DRC is that they each hold a well-kept secret. In "Le secret. Qui a le droit de savoir quoi" ("Secret: Who Is Allowed to Know What"), the Museum der Kulturen in Basel explores this subject through the presentation of a variety of objects in its collection, revealing the stories they conceal. Whether intended to establish borders between initiates and strangers, to ensure power and control, to imperil those who might divulge it, to arouse curiosity, or to seduce, the secret is explored here in all of its forms.
"In a Different Light" at the Museum of Anthropology at the UBC
This inaugural exhibition marks the opening of a new gallery dedicated to American Indian and Northwest Coast Indian arts at the Museum of Anthropology at the University of British Columbia, in Vancouver. More than 110 historically significant and unusually fine artworks are presented in a new way. "In a Different Light: Reflecting on Northwest Coast Art" also marks the return of a number of objects to British Columbia which passed from museums into private collections and away from their communities in the nineteenth century. A goal of the exhibition is to restore their history through the knowledge of artists and First Nation members, as well as to enable these people to reconnect with their origins. Transcending notions of art and craftsmanship, these objects offer precious insight into the connections between Native Americans and their lands. The exhibition sheds light on this culture’s perception of the world, as well as upon the creativity and inventiveness that their works display.
The Southern Athabaskans
The Museum of Indian Arts and Culture in Santa Fe is exhibiting more than 100 cultural objects dating from the late 1880s to the present and representing the lifeways of the different Apachean groups in New Mexico and Arizona. "Lifeways of the Southern Athabaskans" features basketry, beaded clothing, and hunting and horse gear from the Jicarilla Apache, Mescalero Apache, Fort Sill Apache (Chiricahua), San Carlos Apache, and White Mountain Apache—distinct cultural groups that are connected by a common language. This show provides a rare glimpse into the cosmology and daily lives of diverse Apache groups, detailing not only how these items were used in everyday life but also the belief systems and cosmology symbolized in their construction.
The Impermanence of Things
After many months of renovation, the Musée d’Ethnographie de Neuchâtel has entirely revamped its space and is reconsidering its holdings in terms of their wealth and variety, without confining them to purely ethnographic, geographic, ethnic, or functional considerations. It has asked and is endeavoring to answer the questions that twenty-first-century ethnographic collections must pose in order to remain relevant. As a start to this process, the museum has opened a major new exhibition at Villa de Pury titled "L’impermanence des choses" ("The Impermanence of Things"). This show is made up of nine modular spaces in which the museum’s holdings are used to put contemporary questions into perspective. In the “Poids” (Weight) section, Asante goldweights refer to the moral burden of the connection between the history of colonization and ethnographic collections, as well as the power relationships between peoples and the weight of the obsessive hoarding of objects, knowledge, and archives. In the “Plumes” (Feathers) section, headdresses from Papua New Guinea are presented within the décor of a Parisian cabaret, since such items are equated with spectacle and show. “Acteurs, Ambassades, Bazars, Artistes” (Actors, Embassies, Bazaar, Artists) and “Regards” (Views) both emphasize that human beings and material possessions are always changing, as are the ways in which they are perceived.
American Indian images, names, and stories infuse American history and contemporary life. The images are everywhere, from the Land O’Lakes butter maiden to the Cleveland Indians’ mascot and from classic Westerns and cartoons to episodes of Seinfeld and South Park. American Indian names are everywhere too, from state, city, and street names to the Tomahawk missile. And the familiar historical events of Pocahontas’s life, the Trail of Tears, and the Battle of Little Bighorn remain popular reference points in everyday conversations. Pervasive, powerful, and at times demeaning, together these reveal how Indians have been embedded in unexpected ways in the history, pop culture, and identity of the United States and the rest of the world. "Americans" highlights the ways in which American Indians have been part of the nation’s identity since before the country began. Objects range from a 1948 Indian Chief to commercial graphics and promotional items with Indian imagery, to Native American artifacts associated with the Battle of the Little Bighorn, an event that unexpectedly contributed to the “branding” of Indian imagery in Western consciousness. Americans is a thoughtful examination of identity, change, and cultural impact.