The Museum of International Folk Art opened in 1953. The woman who founded the museum, Florence Dibell Bartlett, once said: "the art of the craftsman is a bond between the peoples of the world." While she was growing up in the increasingly industrialized United States, she was inspired by the beauty of the handmade. Bartlett believed in creating a sense of community between people from different cultures. She passed away just eight months after the museum opened.
The museum has grown substantially since then. Bartlett originally donated 2,500 objects. After collecting more donations over the years, the museum currently houses more than 130,000 pieces of traditional art, making it the largest collection of international folk art around the globe. Continuing the tradition started by Bartlett, the museum seeks to open a dialogue regarding culture, community, and tradition.
The museum currently displays art from over 100 countries. The art collections are organized geographically, with separate sections for Africa, Asia, Europe, Latin America & the Caribbean, North America, and Oceania. There are also special collections highlighting Spanish colonial art, contemporary Hispano & Latino Art, and textiles.
Some examples of art that you may see include Asian talismans and amulets, Indonesian shadow puppets, Palestinian jewelry, Brazilian wood sculptures, and Turkish ceramics. There's truly a bit of everything.
. Follow the link below to see what's coming up soon.
Cover photo: "Don 't Drink and Drive" by BFS Man is licensed under CC BY 2.0.