A Cross-Cultural Look at Drinking Vessels

November 29, 2014–April 5, 2015

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From water to palm wine, chocolate to chicha, beverages form an integral part of ritual, refreshment, and revelry across cultures. The vessels that contain these liquid volumes are themselves voluble: each goblet or glass, beaker or barrel speaks of distinct religious, social, and aesthetic values. Featuring a range of art from Africa, the Americas, east Asia, and Europe, this exhibition sets drinking vessels in cross-cultural and cross-temporal conversation, drawing from the Mead’s collection of antiquities and decorative arts, and spanning over two millennia.

Related Events

On Thursday, February 5, 2015, at 6:30 p.m., join the organizers of the exhibition—Amy Halliday, acting curator of academic programs, and Keely Sarr, assistant museum educator—for a closer look at drinking vessels from around the world. Stay for the reception following the gallery talk.

On Thursday, March 5, 2015, at 6:30 p.m., join Miriam Kolar, Five College Mellon postdoctoral fellow in digital humanities, for a gallery talk on the sound potential of South American vessels on view in World Cups. Drawing on her research in archaeology, acoustics, and music ethnography, Kolar will demonstrate how ancient objects can transport our imagination and senses. A reception will follow her talk.

Annotated and Illustrated Exhibition Checklist