|Dr. Richard Hodges addresses a press gaggle in previewing the new show at the Penn Museum. |
Photos/Writers Clearinghouse News Service
Or a Period of BlissMaya Predict World's End 23 December
Time -- how the Maya calculated it, revered it, and predicted it -- is the theme of a new inter-active exhibit at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaelogy and Anthropology. It's the best thing the Penn Museum, under the direction of the brilliant Dr. Richard Hodges has done, in years. That's saying a lot since Hodges -- who alas is leaving for an academic post in Rome -- has transformed the museum to a worthy companion to the Philadelphia Museum of Art, only taking a back seat to the Metropolitan Museum of Art for curatorial skill in presenting ancient civilizations.
'Maya, 2012: Lords of Time' runs to 13 January 2013. If if all goes well, that is. According to the Maya calendar, doomsday will come two days before Christmas, as the Western calendar is calculated. Or, if not doomsday, the beginning of a period of bliss. Never mind, the Maya weren't sure.
This wonderful exhibit was curated by Dr. Loa Traxler and Simon Martin. Come to learn about Maya time. Come away learning about the Maya, uniquely different from the Aztec with whom they are often confused.
P.S. Got to wondering about the almost interchangeable usage of 'Maya' and 'Mayan' in the exhibit as noun and adjective. Actually, not so. 'Maya' is the noun and adjective for all things Maya, except their language which is Mayan. The meaning of 'Maya'? Native People.
-- Richard Carreño