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Friday, July 03, 2009

Know: Artful Animals - new family exhibit

Just opened at the African Art Museum on the mall (10th and Independence Ave SW) in D.C. Aimed at children but also interesting for adults, the exhibition includes 130 objects that give you a cross-section of art from various African cultures and a variety of perceptions of nonhuman animals’ roles, from symbols of power to embodiments of deities to earthly neighbors welcomed, feared or exploited. Includes free activities for kids and a clever lesson involving a mirror. Runs through February 21, 2010. Shown here: a helmet mask of wood from the Loma peoples of Liberia and Guinea, and an oil painting from appx 1950 by Republic of Congo article Kaballa depicting mother crocodiles protecting their eggs. For racier fare, the Mami Watts water spirit goddess exhibit is worth a visit...the last room's full of surprising, stunning finds.

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