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50 Years of Pre-Columbian Art

January 15, 2013 – January 5, 2014

Jaina Figurines

In 2013, Dumbarton Oaks celebrates the fiftieth anniversary of the Robert Woods Bliss Collection of Pre-Columbian Art in the Philip Johnson Pavilion.

Select artworks on loan from U.S. and international museums join the permanent collection in the Philip Johnson Pavilion. In the spirit of collaborative discovery championed by Robert Woods Bliss during his lifetime, the displays explore connections and contrasts between objects and cultures. A gilded Mixtec atlatl, a painted Maya figurine, ancient glyphs, and delicate Andean mosaics showcase the heights of ancient American artistic achievement and highlight recent advances in object research. Objects loaned from Harvard University’s Peabody Museum recall a tradition of institutional ties originally cultivated by Bliss himself, who consulted regularly with the museum’s curators and conservators. After five decades, his Pre-Columbian collection continues to incite scholarly inquiry, reveal ancient craftsmanship, and delight the eye of the viewer.


This exhibition is part of a year-long program of exhibitions and events to celebrate 50 Years of Pre-Columbian Art at Dumbarton Oaks.


Images courtesy of Dumbarton Oaks, Pre-Columbian Collection, and Detroit Institute of Arts.

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