Thanks to the nurnberg natural history society, which owns one of the largest collections of artworks from pre-columbian costa rica in europe, the exhibition in herzogenaurach was made possible.
"Latin america is more than carnival in rio", the mayor explained at the opening event. So many discoveries come from america: tobacco, potatoes, tomatoes, chocolate, vanilla, peanuts, peppers and much more.
At the opening ceremony there were also local specialties to taste and uschi schmidt from the fair-trade steering group also offered fair-trade products. "We will present products from the respective country at each event and want to point out that there are many products from the third world", schmidt promotes fair trade products.
Hansjorg widler and werner feist from the natural history society gave explanations and guided tours of the exhibition, and osvaldo parisi provided the appropriate guitar music.
Outstanding pieces from this collection are on display in the city museum: stone figures and ceramics, representations of animals and tools for the work of the shamans are impressive testimonies to artistic diversity and outstanding craftsmanship. They were made before the year 1500 of our time and were mostly found as grave goods.
Such objects are seldom seen in european museums, as most exhibitions attempt to present the advanced civilizations of america. The presentation of the culture of costa rica bridges the gap between the mexican high cultures of the maya and aztecs and the south american high cultures of the incas or the nazca-culture.
With original exhibits and visual material, the exhibition shown as part of the cultural days and the program of the city museum gives a fascinating insight into the south american high cultures in peru, ecuador and bolivia as well as the mesoamerican high cultures in mexico, guatemala, belize, honduras and el salvador. Focus of the exhibition is costa rica, where the influences from both regions meet.
The exhibition presents a comprehensive and impressive cross-section of artifacts from the indigenous cultures of the latin american continent and tries to interpret the traces of a destroyed culture. The expressive art of the indians is strange, their world view difficult to understand for us – but this is also a good way to acceptance and tolerance of other cultures and people.