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Pacific Art in Detail

Pacific Art in Detail introduces the riches of Oceanic art through astonishing close-up views of rarely seen treasures, allowing behind-the-scenes insight into this vibrant work that no conventional gallery tour affords. Carefully selected pieces from the world-renowned Oceanic collection at the British Museum--by artists employing a wide variety of materials and techniques--illustrate such major themes as the role of artistic creation in land and ocean management, political and spiritual power, and connections to gods and ancestors. Jennifer Newell's introduction addresses the question "What is Pacific art?" while short texts place each individual object into its cultural context. Handsome photographs of each complete work are displayed alongside these fine details, to allow for intriguing comparisons between seemingly unrelated objects and media. Evoking the hand and eye of the most accomplished Pacific artists and craft workers, past and present, these details spur the creative imagination and serve as an astute introduction to Oceanic collections in museums around the world.
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About the Author

Jenny Newell is Research Fellow, National Museum of Australia, and was formerly Curator, Oceania section, British Museum. She is the author of Trading Nature: Tahitians, Europeans, and Ecological Exchange.

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