Museo del Oro
One lasting impression in my recent stay in Bogotá was the Museo del Oro. It displays an extraordinary selection of its pre-colombian artworks – the biggest in the world. I had seen them in books before but now being surrounded by them by such large numbers was something very different. The exhibition was called “Cosmología y Symbolismo” (Cosmology and Symbolism) and the official introduction reads like this:
“Pre-Hispanic goldworking societies developed special ways of understanding the world. With these, they gave order to their surrounding and filled them with symbolic content. These cosmologies answered problems that were central to their existence, such as death, illness, and the meaning of life. Imbued with a profound religious sense, they converted the universe, society and its creations into sacred realities, while establishing a link between man and his ancestors that was essential to the continuity of the traditions. Metas, particularly gold, symbolized the fertilizing powers of the sun and expressed the divine origin of the power held by the rulers.”
I found myself wandering around the exhibition rooms completely inspired and in awe seeing these pieces. Here is a selection of some of my favorites.