Museum of Anthropology at UBC announces new Amazonian exhibition

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      UBC’s Museum of Anthropology (6393 NW Marine Drive) has unveiled a new major exhibition titled Amazonia: The Rights of Nature, which will be on display from March 10, 2017, to January 28, 2018.

      Curated by Dr. Nuno Porto (MOA curator, African and Latin America), the collection will feature Amazonian basketry, textile, carvings, feather works, and ceramics that represents indigenous, Maroon, and white settler communities.

      These groups speak out against threats caused by political violence, mining, oil and gas exploration, forest fire, hydroelectric plants, and industrial agriculture—topics that the new exhibition aims to address through holistic well-being.

      Amazonia aims to draw attention to South American indigenous forms of knowledge, including the notions of the Rights of Nature. Known in Spanish as buen vivir, it is the concept that a good life utilizes holistic approaches that combine unity, equality, dignity, reciprocity, social and gender equality.

      Visitors will also learn about century-old unsuspected relationships between Vancouver and Amazonian peoples, ideas, and their struggles.

      The objects on display have been assembled from MOA’s collection of acquisitions and donations. The items are mostly composed of simple elements including vegetal fibers, wood, animal parts, clay, or feathers. These components are used to make sophisticated and intricate textiles such as basketry and jewellery, which showcase the knowledge and craftsmanship of groups in South American region.

      The exhibition will be housed in MOA’s O’Brian Gallery, one of the temporary exhibition spaces inside the museum that showcases travelling and in-house exhibits. 

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