Santa Fe, NM
Extraordinary how a small glass bead from the island of Murano (Venice, Italy) or the mountains of Bohemia (Czech Republic) can travel around the world, entering into the cultural life of people far distant. Glass beads are the ultimate migrants. Where they start out is seldom where they end up. No matter where they originate, the locale that uses them makes them into something specific to their own world view.
This exhibition is about what happens to these beads when they arrive at their final destination, whether it be the African continent (Botswana, Cameroon, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Ghana, Nigeria, South Africa), to Borneo, to Burma, to India, Native North America to Latin America (Mexico, Bolivia to Ecuador). However, this exhibit is not actually about beads, rather it is about the working beads resulting in Beadwork, and what a collective of beads in a garment or an object reveals about the intentions of its makers or users.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website.