September 11 to November 4
Cloth production in the Andes mountain region of Peru, Bolivia and northern Chile dates back to at least 2,500 B.C. During this time, textiles were made from various vegetal fibers like cotton. However, by 1,500 B.C., animal fibers—lama, alpaca, and other American camelids—were in general use. Other materials like bast (inner tree bark fibers) and other similarly tough materials were used for cordage (string, rope) and netting. Human hair was also used, albeit rarely, to make fine cordage for masks and effigies.
By 1,000 BC, virtually every known weaving technique was in use, as was every available natural dye or coloring agent. (For example, red dye was made by either boiling the Relbunium plant or by crushing cochineal beetles.) Although dyeing spun yarn was the norm, un-spun material like cotton and wool, could be dyed. Additionally, many fabrics were decorated with painted designs or feathers upon completion.
Closing Date TBD
The Museum of the Red River opened in 1975 with a focus on regional archaeology. It supported local field research, often collaborating with agencies like the Oklahoma Archeological Survey or the U.S. Forest Service. At the same time, the Museum collected complementary material for educational purposes. In the 1980s, it ceased all field operations and returned any materials recovered under government contract to the appropriate agencies. It expanded its collecting interest to include art from the Americas, Africa, Asia and Pacific Islands.
Through October 28
Many people who call the South Pacific region home, believe in an otherworldly realm populated with ghosts and spirits. These beings are often contacted through ritual and prayer for guidance, good fortune, and protection. This belief permeates all aspects of the region, and can be seen in everyday utensils as well as works of art.
[Pictured: Hei Tiki Pendant by Wayne Turnbull (b. Gisborne, New Zealand). Museum Purchase, with support from Shady Ladies, LLC.]