Past Exhibitions

Katsina exhibition

 

Past exhibition

(September 2011- March 2012)

For the Hopi, katsinas exist in three forms: spirits, masked dancers, and dolls. The spirits act as intermediaries between the supernatural and mortal worlds, fostering fertility, growth, and well-being. For six months of the year, when they reside in the Hopi villages, katsinas are represented by masked dancers. The doll versions, carved from cottonwood root, are given to women and especially girls as a blessing. Traditionally they have no bases, but are meant to be hung on home walls, where girls can learn to differentiate the many katsinas.

Mercedes Dorame exhibition

Past exhibition

(September 7, 2011–July 1, 2012)

This exhibition explores Dorame’s cultural ties to Los Angeles. In these photographs the artist relives the experience of her Native American grandparents, struggling to fit into a society that wanted to erase them. In re-examining their experience, and by extension her own, she finds moments when fault lines erupt threatening to expose the gaps existing between the actual and the perceived.

99 Bottles of Beer teaser image

Past exhibition

This exhibition is a rich display revealing the striking unities and diversities of human cultures as they come together to celebrate the fruit of the grain.

Conservator's Art teaser image

Past exhibition

Explore the results of extensive conservation carried out on pieces including crocodile mummies, statuary, mummy portraits, amulets, and stela collected around 1900 through the patronage of Phoebe A. Hearst.

Native Californian Culture teaser image

Past exhibition

Over thousands of years, the Native peoples of the present state of California developed many complex cultures, with differing customs related to varied environments and histories. Native Californian Cultures is dedicated exclusively to displays drawn from the Museum's permanent collections from California, the world's largest and most comprehensive devoted to this region. In a "visible storage" style of display, about 500 objects illustrate the great diversity of the Californian peoples who live within the boundaries of the present state. By grouping objects according to common usage or object type, the similarities and differences among California peoples are made readily apparent.

Maker's Hand teaser image

Past exhibition

The Phoebe A. Hearst Museum of Anthropology offers its latest interpretation of human ingenuity with this exhibit. In addition to the exhibits on Beer and the Native California Cultures Gallery, there is a display on Africa. The ancient civilizations of Egypt, the Mediterranean, Peru, and North America are represented through many fine archaeological examples in another section. While the artifacts are diverse in origin, taken as a whole they underscore the history of human innovation.  

Past exhibition

Rajasthan, a state in northwestern India, is famed for its colorful and distinctive art styles. For centuries, its princely rulers (rajputs, or “sons of kings”) have encouraged a wide range of arts. Rajasthani arts are distinguished by a complex interplay between court and village traditions, especially evident in those used in ritual performances. The exhibition focuses on festival and religious arts, especially those concerned with pictorial narrative.

From the Land of the Rajas explores how and why this art was made by considering the social and cultural contexts of visual artistry in Rajasthan. In this exhibition, about 150 objects are arranged according to a combination of form and function, reflecting how different kinds of objects are used and seen in different settings: the home, field, fair, theater, temple, shrine, market, and court. 

Past Exhibition

The invention of photography in 1839 coincided with a great age of exploration and travel. The medium proved to be a suitable tool for colonial possession and control, for with it one could delimit the world, make it tangible, and return with it to the metropole. Here, these visual surrogates could be preserved and classified for the benefit of science or art.

Past Exhibition

Overseas Georgia is located between the Black and Caspian Seas. Georgia is a remote periphery for Europe as well as for Asia since its territory spans both of these continents. Georgia's neighboring countries are: Turkey and Armenia from the south, Republics of Russia from the north, and Azerbaijan from the east.

The curators collected materials for this exhibit during their ethnographic fieldwork. The photo exhibit shows many examples of the folk architecture and artifacts that no longer exist.  

Past Exhibition

George M. Foster—professor of anthropology at UC Berkeley from 1953 to 1979—is well known for his half-century of ethnographic fieldwork in Tzintzuntzan, a town on Lake Pátzcuaro, in Michoacán, Mexico. This work has formed the basis for important contributions to the study of peasant societies and to the subfields of medical and applied anthropology. Underlying it all has been his development of methodologies for long-term research. Until now, however, his extensive use of photography has remained largely hidden.

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