Idabel, OK (October 18, 2017)—The Museum will showcase parts of its Amazon collection, one of the best in the United States, in its new exhibit, As culturas Amazônicas. The show contains over 100 objects from the Museum’s South American collection and represents 37 different groups. Additional objects were provided by Michael and Jeanne Bernstein of Tucson, Arizona.
The show will remain open until January 14, 2018. Admission to the exhibit—and the rest of the Museum—is free. However, parts of the Museum’s permanent exhibits, including Acrocanthosaurus atokensis are unavailable due to construction. (Acro is anticipated to return in late 2017/early 2018.)
In many ways, the Amazonian Basin is similar to the American frontier during the 19th century. The Basin, which contains the world’s largest rainforest, is experiencing unprecedented exploitation, settlement, and development. Consequently, its indigenous people are losing their land and their resources. Unsurprisingly, it has becoming increasingly difficult for people to maintain their traditional culture.
However, some groups have managed to maintain their cultural identity by promoting—and often selling—traditional art. Their art remains linked to their ceremonies, myths, and traditional way of life. By selling their art, they ensure that the culture of the Amazon will endure, while gaining some measure of independence. The objects on display at the Museum were primarily purchased from those artists during the last 40 years.