Published: April 24, 2001
The Road to Aztlan:
LOS ANGELES, CALIF. – The Los Angeles County Museum of Art – LACMA – has organized a major exhibition that investigates the art and culture from the American Southwest and portions of Mexico, an area rich in mythological folklore and metaphorically referred to as Aztlan.
As the most recent example of the quest for this legendary region, “The Road to Aztlan: Art from a Mythic Homeland,” on public view May 13 through August 26, explores the art derived from and created about this area.
With more than 250 rare examples of art and artifacts from the pre-Columbian, colonial and contemporary eras, the exhibition includes a ceramic “Parrot Effigy Figure” (circa 200 BC-Ad 500), a “Shell Coat of Armor (Ninth-Twelfth Century), and an image of “San Jose” made of feathers (Sixteenth Century).
The Southwest has long been an area associated with mythic origins. Soon after the arrival of the Spanish in Central Mexico in 1519, speculation about the nature of the peoples to the north of Mexico fueled expectations of finding great wealth there. Beginning in 1539, expeditions from central Mexico traveled north on a quest to locate a rumored utopia.
Embracing the long history of Aztlan lore, “The Road to Aztlan: Art from a Mythic Homeland” views Aztlan as a metaphoric center place reflecting a sacred geography and a social imaginary that incorporates economics, religion, history and art in the world views of the various peoples of the Southwest and Mexico.
The exhibition is configured to present a historic over view of the relationships between the American Southwest and Mexico. Divided into three chronological periods, the exhibition focuses on the pre-Columbian era (Third Century BC-1521), the colonial period (1521-1848) and contemporary times (1848-2000).
Museum hours are Monday, Tuesday and Thursday, noon to 8 pm; Friday, noon to 9 pm; Saturday and Sunday, 11 am to 8 pm. Telephone, 323-857-6000.
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