The National Museum of American History is not an art museum. But works of art fill its collections and testify to the vital place of art in everyday American life. The ceramics collections hold hundreds of examples of American and European art glass and pottery. Fashion sketches, illustrations, and prints are part of the costume collections. Donations from ethnic and cultural communities include many homemade religious ornaments, paintings, and figures. The Harry T Peters "America on Stone" collection alone comprises some 1,700 color prints of scenes from the 1800s. The National Quilt Collection is art on fabric. And the tools of artists and artisans are part of the Museum's collections, too, in the form of printing plates, woodblock tools, photographic equipment, and potters' stamps, kilns, and wheels.
"Art - Overview" showing 1 items.
- La Malinche, the title of this lithograph, was the indigenous woman who translated for Cortés between Maya, Náhuatl, and Spanish during his first years in Mexico. Considered either as a traitor or a founding mother by some Mexicans, La Malinche was Cortés's lover and the mother of his favorite son Martín. She and Moctezuma are also central figures in the Matachines dances that are performed in Mexico and New Mexico. Originally commemorating the expulsion of the Moors from southern Spain in 1492, the dance was brought to Mexico where it was treated as a means for Christianizing native peoples. The historical figure of La Malinche, known in Spanish by the name Doña Marina, is also credited for playing an almost miraculous role in the early evangelization of central Mexico. This print, made by Jean Charlot in the 1933, shows a young girl in the role of La Malinche, holding a rattle or toy in one hand, and a sword in the other. Jean Charlot, a French-born artist, lived and studied in Mexico in the 1920s and 1930s. He depicted stylized scenes from the daily life of Mexican workers, particularly indigenous women.
- Currently not on view
- Date made
- graphic artist
- Charlot, Jean
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- Data Source
- National Museum of American History, Kenneth E. Behring Center