Tri-Cities TN/VA: Scattered clouds, 82.4 °F
ETSU’s Slocumb Galleries East Tennessee State University Johnson City, TN 37614
Laden with profound ritual meanings, the Masks of the Michoacán -- or Máscaras de Michoacán -- exhibition, on display Oct. 9-25 at ETSU’s Slocumb Galleries, is a mosaic of Michoacán culture. The exhibition features 40 Mesoamerican masks from the Mask Museum in the Centro Cultural Antiguo Colegio Jesuita in Pátzcuaro, Michoacán. An essential element of human ritual used during Colonial times, each of these masks has played a role in ceremonial dances within communities that continue to keep alive the festivities and traditions inherited from their ancestors. Each mask represents the folk art of Michoacán and illustrates a unique artistry of carving, pigmentation, expressiveness of features and details. The collection is a treasure rescued and assembled from private collections and is presented by the Tennessee Consortium for International Studies, as its fourth art exhibition from México. “The masks of Michoacán are works of art in their own right,” says Francisco Rodriguez Onate, who was born in Morelia, Michoacán. “Through these masks one gets to know and appreciate the art of the people of Michoacán and the ceremonies and traditions from which these masks emerge.” To provide background on the masks, on Monday, Oct. 22, Dr. Marion Oettinger Jr. will present a lecture titled, “Dancing Faces: Mexican Masks in Cultural Context.” The lecture will begin at 6 p.m. in Ball Hall Room 127 and be preceded at 5 p.m. by a reception in the galleries. Oettinger is a cultural anthropologist specializing in Latin America and has been curator of the Latin American Art collection at the San Antonio Museum of Art since 1985. For information about the exhibition or lecture, call Mary B. Martin School of the Arts at 423-439-TKTS (8587) or visit www.etsu.edu/cas/arts.