This landmark exhibition, featuring more than 300 luxury arts of the Incas, the Aztecs, and their predecessors, traces the development of goldworking and other luxury arts, casting light on the brilliance of ancient American artists and their legacy. Drawn from over 50 museums in 12 countries—including Mexico, Peru, Guatemala, Costa Rica, and Colombia—it features spectacular works of art from recent archaeological excavations, many of which have never before left their home countries. Highlights include the exquisite gold ornaments of the Lord of Sipán, the richest unlooted tomb in the ancient Americas; the malachite funerary mask of a woman known as the Red Queen, from the Maya site of Palenque; newly discovered ritual offerings from the sacred precinct of the Aztec Empire; and the “Fisherman’s Treasure,” a set of Mixtec gold ornaments plundered by Spanish conquistadors and destined for Charles V, the Holy Roman Emperor and Spanish king, but lost en route to Spain.
Golden Kingdoms will focus on specific places and times—crucibles of innovation, moments of exceptional achievement in the arts—to explore how materials were selected and transformed, imbued with meaning, and deployed in the most important rituals of their time. This unprecedented exhibition will feature more than 300 works from 52 lenders in 12 countries.
Exhibition dates: February 28–May 28, 2018