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'The Language of Beauty' Mayan art on show in Berlin

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'The Language of Beauty' Mayan art on show in Berlin

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Sculptures celebrating the human body, precious jewellery, animals and deities are on show in an exhibition of Mayan art in Berlin.

The show features artwork created before the arrival of Spanish colonial rulers in the 16th century.

Gereon Sievernich is the director of Martin-Gropius-Bau Museum: “The exhibition is titled The Maya – Language of Beauty and we are showing 300 pieces that show how the Mayan artists created sculptures of people and animals. The pieces span almost 2000 years, from 500 BC until 1500 AD.”

The exhibition explores the importance of clothing in indicating social status, and features jewellery such as necklaces and ear plugs in jade and chrysoprase.

Karina Romero Blanco, is the shows curator: “You can’t say that something is specific to Mayan art, but rather the range is specific to Mayan art. The Mayan artists used a whole variety of materials, techniques and languages of art and this is precisely what characterises Mayan art – this diversity. This richness of the art would be the defining Mayan characteristic.”

The exhibition, sponsored by the Mexican National Institute of Anthropology and History, has been shown at several museums in Mexico and in Beijing, China. The Berlin stop is the only place the exhibition is on show in Europe.

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