Indian Art of the Americas at the Art Institute of Chicago


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Richard Townsend; With contributions by Elizabeth Pope

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A stunning survey of the indigenous art, architecture, and spiritual beliefs of the Americas, from the Precolumbian era to the 20th century

This landmark publication catalogues the Art Institute of Chicago’s outstanding collection of Indian art of the Americas, one of the foremost of its kind in the United States. Showcasing a host of previously unpublished objects dating from the Precolumbian era to the 20th century, the book marks the first time these holdings have been comprehensively documented. Richard Townsend and Elizabeth Pope weave an overarching narrative that ranges from the Midwestern United States to the Yucatán Peninsula to the heart of South America. While exploring artists’ myriad economic, historical, linguistic, and social backgrounds, the authors demonstrate that they shared both a deep, underlying cosmological view and the desire to secure their communities’ prosperity by affirming connections to the sacred forces of the natural world. The critical essays focus on topics that bridge traditions across North, Central, and South America, including materials, methods of manufacture, the diversity of stylistic features, and the iconography and functions of various objects. Gorgeously illustrated in color with more than 500 vibrant images, this handsome catalogue serves as the definitive survey of an unparalleled collection.

Distributed for the Art Institute of Chicago

Richard Townsend is chair of African and Amerindian art and Elizabeth Pope is research assistant and collections manager, Department of African and Amerindian Art, both at the Art Institute of Chicago.
ISBN: 9780300214833
Publication Date: June 28, 2016
Publishing Partner: Distributed for the Art Institute of Chicago
368 pages, 9 x 12
500 color illus.
Hero, Hawk, and Open Hand

American Indian Art of the Ancient Midwest and South

Edited by Richard F. Townsend

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