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Masterpieces of Pre-Columbian Gold

January 20 – February 18, 1954
Main Floor, Lobby B

Installation view of Masterpieces of Pre-Columbian Gold, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., Gallery Archives

This exhibition is no longer on view at the National Gallery.

Overview: 80 of the finest pieces from the Gold Museum of the Banco de la República in Bogotá, Colombia, were exhibited outside the bank for the first time. The Museo del Oro, formed in 1939 to collect and preserve a part of the cultural and artistic patrimony of Colombia, then had 6,726 items, 4 times the number of pre-Hispanic gold objects from Colombia in all the other museums and private collections in the world. The objects were selected by Mr. and Mrs. Dudley T. Easby Jr., secretary of the Metropolitan Museum, in consultation with Dr. José Pérez de Barradas, a specialist in pre-Hispanic gold work at the University of Madrid. The exhibition paid homage to Columbia University on its 200th anniversary.

Under the direction of Perry B. Cott, the exhibition was installed in 10 specially built cases with orange interiors, which were set into the walls.

Catalog: 80 Masterpieces from the Gold Museum, Banco de la República, Bogotá, introduction by José Pérez de Barradas. Bogotá, Colombia: Banco de la República, 1954.

Other Venues: Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York
M.H. de Young Memorial Museum, San Francisco