Art and Knowledge

The compelling visual art forms presented in this section of the exhibition are bearers of knowledge, intended to encode, protect, or communicate particular types of information. Such objects have long been used to evoke proverbial wisdom, impart esoteric teachings, celebrate family genealogies, or express moral values. In contexts such as these, art functions like language, sending messages and safeguarding intellectual heritage.

The motifs found on archaeological objects, for example, can teach us about the practices and lives of peoples who left no written records. Memory devices are designed to assist their owners with the recollection of people, events, and sacred places. Styles of dress and adornment convey aspects of personal and cultural identity. Whether worn, carried, displayed, buried, or performed, these works of art play critical roles in the perpetuation of traditions and teachings from generation to generation, teacher to student, performer to audience.

In the menu to the left, click on the headings nested below Art and Knowledge to learn more.

  • X65.5679 Ancestor figures (adu zatua)

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    Not Currently On View in Intersections 


    Object Name: Ancestor figures (adu zatua)

    Artist: Unknown

    Place of Origin: North Nias Island, Indonesia

    Date/Era: Collected before 1907

    Medium/Materials: Wood, plant fiber

    Dimensions: W: 69 cm

    Credit Line: Fowler Museum at UCLA. Gift of the Wellcome Trust.

    Accession Number: X65.5679

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  • X67.7 Bark painting

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    Bark painting
    Artist: Dawidi
    Arnhem Land, Northern Australia
    Bark and pigment
    H: 94.0 cm, W: 46.0 cm, D: 7.5 cm (H: 37.0 in, W: 18.1 in, D: 2.9 in)
    Museum purchase. X67.7

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  • X81.319a-c Bride’s outfit

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    Not Currently On View in Intersections 


    Bride’s outfit
    Memmon or Kutri Muslims
    Kotara, western Kutch, Gujarat, India
    Circa 1910
    Silk, metallic thread, sequins
    H: 120.0 cm, W: 108.0 cm (H: 47.2 in, W: 42.5 in)
    Fowler Museum at UCLA. Gift of Dr. and Mrs. Jonathan E. Fielding. X81.319a-c

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  • X82.932 Tihu

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    Tihu of Taatangaya Katsina (Hornet)
    Hopi peoples
    Late 20th century
    Wood and paint
    L: 25.5 cm, D: 9.5 cm (L: 10.0 in, D: 3.7 in)
    Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Steve Nelson. X82.932

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  • X86.3934 Stirrup spout bottle

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    Stirrup spout bottle
    Moche style
    North coast, Peru
    100-800 C.E.
    W: 16.0 cm, H: 30.2 cm, D: 16.0 cm (W: 6.3 in, H: 11.9 in, D: 6.3 in)
    Fowler Museum at UCLA. Gift of Mr. and Mrs. Herbert L. Lucas Jr. X86.3934

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