General Aztecs Maya Tocuaro Kids Contact 28 Feb 2021/5 Monkey
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Brighton Museum

Brighton Museum & Art Gallery

In Brighton’s World Art holdings there are several interesting and appealing Mexican exhibits, some on display in the James Green Gallery of World Art, others kept in store, but accessible to serious students.

Brighton Museum & Art Gallery
Brighton Museum & Art Gallery (Click on image to enlarge)

Of note are a couple of Aztec pieces, over 20 Mexican folk masks, and some intriguing curiosity items...

Aztec pieces, Brighton Museum
Aztec pieces, Brighton Museum (Click on image to enlarge)

The two original Aztec pieces are both ceramic - a figurine of Xochiquetzal (goddess of love) and a terracotta printing stamp bearing a monkey design; both donated to the museum in 1925 by F W Lucas.

Small black obsidian carving of a human face
Small black obsidian carving of a human face (Click on image to enlarge)

Some fine examples of Mexican folk masks, believed to have been acquired when Tony Shelton was Keeper of the collection in the early 1990s, can be viewed online (2011: link unavailable - we’re investigating!) as well as in our Masks photo gallery - we’re grateful to Sarah Posey, Brighton Museum’s Keeper of World Art, for allowing this.

Armadillo basket
Armadillo basket (Click on image to enlarge)

F. W. Lucas had a particular interest in objects made from natural or animal material - on display in Brighton’s Cabinet of Curiosities is this delightful basket made from the hard outer shell of an armadillo. The handle is made of the tail of the armadillo which has been fastened into the animal’s mouth. The basket is lined with a green silk bag with an off-white drawstring cord. It was created by a Mexican Indian maker and donated to the museum in 1958 by a Mr. Hood.

Brighton Aquarium, circa 1929
Brighton Aquarium, circa 1929 (Click on image to enlarge)

And buried in the museum’s photographic archives is this b/w image, taken around 1929, of Brighton Aquarium’s interior - given an ‘Aztec’ style re-vamp by Brighton Corporation in 1927. Can anyone throw any more light on this?!

Mexicolore’s Mexican mask photo gallery

Brighton Museum and Art Gallery
Brighton Aquarium’s history
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