Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Apocolypse or Not?


As the impending doom of December 21’s scheduled apocalypse approaches, it’s only natural to want to get out and see the sites.  Visiting a few Pre-Colombian inspired exhibits in D.C. may have one realizing that the fascinating culture of Ancient Mesoamerica is much more than calendar-keeping.   

Here at the Luther W. Brady Art Gallery the Turned and Burnt: Pre-Colombian Artifacts and Wood-turned Vessels exhibit will give one a taste of Pre-Colombian art, paired with the works of local woodturners.  Both the ancient and contemporary pieces draw transcendental inspiration from nature.  The use of earthen materials and the involved process of creation in both Pre-Colombian terracotta and contemporary woodturning produce a physical connection between the artist and the art.  For Mayans, this process was no doubt mystical and for contemporary artists, it is cathartic.  This exhibit focuses on the historic tradition of connecting to nature via the artistic process.           

Not far away, at the Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection in Georgetown, an extensive permanent Pre-Colombian collection is displayed as one with nature.  The specially designed gallery is a unique space that recreates for the viewer this connection with nature.  The circular room is walled by windows that at all times look out upon the gardens.  The viewer is immersed in nature which serves as a fitting backdrop for the art of a society that worshipped nature gods. Their current exhibit, The Ancient Future: Mesoamerican and Andean Timekeeping, expands upon the Mesoamerican calendars that so potently fascinate the masses today.

Aztec Sculpture, Dumbarton Oaks Pre-Colombian Gallery


Finally, at the Mexican Cultural Institute’s 16th Street Mansion one can find a stunning array of murals that, just like Turned and Burnt, represent a collision of ancient motifs and modern style.  The murals were painted by Cueva del Rio between 1933 and 1941 and explore the history of Mexico in bold, colorful fresco.  Featured prominently among the murals are themes of Aztec mythology and stunning representations of the Mexican landscape.  Cueva del Rio synthesizes ancient traditions with modern Mexican life. 

Pre-Colombian Mexico, Roberto Cuevo del Rio, Mexican Cultural Institute

Turned and Burnt: Pre-Columbian Artifacts and Wood-turned Vessels

co-sponsored by the Office of Sustainability
October 8 - December 21, 2012
The exhibition is located on the 2nd Floor of the Media & Public Affairs Building at 805 21st Street, NW
Can be viewed:
Mon-Fri 7-10


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Covering exhibits at the Luther W. Brady Art Gallery and giving you a peek into the Permanent Collection of the George Washington University.

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Howard Hodgkin: Paintings - May 16, 2012

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Apocolypse or Not?


As the impending doom of December 21’s scheduled apocalypse approaches, it’s only natural to want to get out and see the sites.  Visiting a few Pre-Colombian inspired exhibits in D.C. may have one realizing that the fascinating culture of Ancient Mesoamerica is much more than calendar-keeping.   

Here at the Luther W. Brady Art Gallery the Turned and Burnt: Pre-Colombian Artifacts and Wood-turned Vessels exhibit will give one a taste of Pre-Colombian art, paired with the works of local woodturners.  Both the ancient and contemporary pieces draw transcendental inspiration from nature.  The use of earthen materials and the involved process of creation in both Pre-Colombian terracotta and contemporary woodturning produce a physical connection between the artist and the art.  For Mayans, this process was no doubt mystical and for contemporary artists, it is cathartic.  This exhibit focuses on the historic tradition of connecting to nature via the artistic process.           

Not far away, at the Dumbarton Oaks Research Library and Collection in Georgetown, an extensive permanent Pre-Colombian collection is displayed as one with nature.  The specially designed gallery is a unique space that recreates for the viewer this connection with nature.  The circular room is walled by windows that at all times look out upon the gardens.  The viewer is immersed in nature which serves as a fitting backdrop for the art of a society that worshipped nature gods. Their current exhibit, The Ancient Future: Mesoamerican and Andean Timekeeping, expands upon the Mesoamerican calendars that so potently fascinate the masses today.

Aztec Sculpture, Dumbarton Oaks Pre-Colombian Gallery


Finally, at the Mexican Cultural Institute’s 16th Street Mansion one can find a stunning array of murals that, just like Turned and Burnt, represent a collision of ancient motifs and modern style.  The murals were painted by Cueva del Rio between 1933 and 1941 and explore the history of Mexico in bold, colorful fresco.  Featured prominently among the murals are themes of Aztec mythology and stunning representations of the Mexican landscape.  Cueva del Rio synthesizes ancient traditions with modern Mexican life. 

Pre-Colombian Mexico, Roberto Cuevo del Rio, Mexican Cultural Institute

Turned and Burnt: Pre-Columbian Artifacts and Wood-turned Vessels

co-sponsored by the Office of Sustainability
October 8 - December 21, 2012
The exhibition is located on the 2nd Floor of the Media & Public Affairs Building at 805 21st Street, NW
Can be viewed:
Mon-Fri 7-10


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Washington, District of Columbia, United States
"Found In Collection" or simply "FIC" is the way many museums classify the more mysterious items in their possession that have little or no documentation. Here at the Luther W. Brady Art Gallery of the George Washington University, we do keep extensive records of our collection, but some of the items we come across in academic buildings or our own storage can leave us wondering. This blog is an effort to showcase some of the more curious examples and their stories, and to provide a glimpse of the great variety of art pieces within the collection. To learn more about the Brady Gallery's history, recent exhibitions, or the George Washington University, take a look at the links below.

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