Wednesday, April 16, 2014

View rarely-seen Vatican art at the de Young

From page B12 | March 08, 2013 | Leave Comment

From the vast holdings of the Vatican Ethnological Museum, the de Young will display 39 rarely-seen works from Africa, Oceania and the Americas that reflect indigenous religious cultures in a new presentation, “Objects of Belief.”

The show runs through Sept.8. The presentation will enable visitors to learn about the local and global significance of the objects and their journeys without the imposition of a single dominant cultural storyline.

The objects on view have been selected for their artistic and cultural significance and span more than four centuries and three continents.

Highlights include two masks and three shrine carvings obtained in 1691 by Fray Francisco Romero in Colombia’s Sierra Nevada de Santa Marta; two figurative sculptures representing the gods Tu and Tupo sent by the first missionary in Mangareva to Pope Gregory XVI in 1837; and a 15th-century stone sculpture created in Mexico of the Aztec god Quetzalcoatl.

The de Young’s dedication to the display and interpretation of objects from Africa, Oceania and the Americas has been very strong, and today more than half of the museum’s gallery space is dedicated to these arts.

“Objects of Belief ” complements the de Young’s permanent collection holdings from these areas and is the very first exhibition to travel to the United States that consists solely of the Vatican’s works from continents and cultures beyond Europe.

“Objects of Belief ” draws its inspiration from the Vatican’s recent efforts to highlight world cultures through important special exhibitions. This collaboration also builds on the Fine Arts Museums’ existing relationship with the Vatican, established in 1982 with “The Vatican Collections: The Papacy and Art,” which included 15 works from the Ethnological Museum.

“Objects of Belief” takes place concurrently with the renovation of the Vatican Ethnological Museum, planned to reopen in 2014.

This exhibition is organized by the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco with gratitude for exceptional loans from the collection of the Vatican Ethnological Museum. Generous support  is provided by Lauren L. T. Hall and David Hearth, and John F. Kunowski and Richard Benefield.

The de Young Museum is located in Golden Gate Park at 50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive in San Francisco. Museum hours are Tuesday through Sunday, 9:30 a.m. to 5:15 p.m., last ticket 4 p.m; Friday, March 29 through Nov. 29, 9:30 a.m. to 8:45 p.m., last ticket 8 p.m. Closed Mondays.

Museum admission is $10 adults; $7 seniors, 65 and older; $6 students with current ID; $6 youths 13–17. Members and children 12 and under are free. General admission is free the first Tuesday of every month.

Tickets can be purchased on site and on the de Young’s Website: Tickets purchased online include a $1 handling charge.Group ticket reservations available by emailing

For more informations visit the Website or call 415-750-3600.



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